I’m coming over all Magpie - what are those oh-so-shiny things?
These oh-so-shiny things? They're just some round little balls you can sort of stack together.
Oh, and they happen to harbour servo motors, sensors, microprogrammed control units and lockable connectors. Why? Because you can connect them together to go on a modular robotic rampage or, you know, make a wheelie lamp, or something. The possibilities are almost infinite.
Infinite, you say? So I can clip together a hundred of them and make a mega-drone?
We said almost infinite. They’re a bit slow and it won’t be cheap to expand functionality, but with X-cell add-ons you can hook your little ‘bot up with wheels, lights, cameras and connectors, ready for roving action.
The whole idea is to kickstart (on Kickstarter) a widespread consumer robotics movement, with modularity meaning functions can be added to in the future.
OK, you’ve got me listening - but I ain’t no robo-builder
Fear not: whilst you can go crazy and build just about anything the CellRobot’s multi-directional interlocking spheres will allow, like all good bits of mad science kit the construct-o-bot comes with a partner app that can guide you through your initial inventions – complete with 3D visualisations. Simplicity is the goal for the Cell’s manufacturer, so that makers and machinists everywhere can get their fix of programmable pod action. And it absolutely wants you to hack your creations, in its pursuit of a global modular mechanical movement.
Sounds a bit terrifying - won’t this be the start of the full-on robot apocalypse?
Maybe – if it reaches its funding goal. Venture capital funding has allowed production to already begin, but for mass production of these plucky automotons a few more future robo-villains need to shell out. If you fancy flinging together a crawling creature or a programmable ball retrieval ‘bot, head over to the Kickstarter page for more.