Tech Digest's Robot World Cup: Semi-Final


No, we hadn’t forgotten about it. We were just giving the final bots in our Robot World Cup a few weeks to rest their bones (well, mechanical joints) before rejoining battle. And what a battle it is. We’re at the semi-final stage, which means the last four robots in the competition. Three of ’em are humanoid: Honda’s Asimo, WowWee’s Robosapien RS Media, and KornTech’s Rogun. The quartet is completed by iRobot’s military Packbot, which swaps legs for tank treads.

Interview: Honda on the future for its Asimo robot

asimo2.jpgAt the CES show this year, Honda’s humanoid Asimo robot was one of the big hits. He didn’t just walk and trot up and down stairs. He ran. He played football. He danced. And through it all, he cracked jokes like a Vegas pro. You can watch our videos of it here.

Naturally, Honda isn’t pumping millions of dollars into Asimo’s R&D to get a few cheap laughs. The company uses the bot in its TV ads for starters. But in the long-term, Honda wants Asimo to become a genuinely helpful companion for us humans. I talked to Stephen Keeney, North American Asimo project leader at Honda, to find out more.