Scientists borrow a technique from bacteria to teach a group of robots to dance in unison, and even join back in when they get knocked out of step
MIT’s Patrick Bechon and Jean-Jacques Slotine have come up with a novel way to get robots to synchronize their activities, drawing inspiration from how bacteria interact. And to demonstrate their work, Bechon and Slotine chose a dance number that has seen more than its share of inspiring ensemble performances: Michael Jackson’s “Thriller.” The researchers programmed a group of humanoid robots from Aldebaran Robotics to dance in unison by sensing their environment and coordinating their movements through a central server — rather than trying to awkwardly follow one another directly. Watch them get down:
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