Ghost Robotics’ Minitaur Demonstrates Impressive New Skills

Last time we saw Ghost Robotics’ Minitaur (which was also the first time we saw Ghost Robotics’ Minitaur), it was getting around mostly by using a sort of hopping or bounding gait. Minitaur can move fairly quickly like this, but one of the advantages that it has as a quadruped is the potential to use a variety of different gaits to help it adapt to different conditions.

In a new video just posted today, Minitaur demonstrates how it’s able to handle all kinds of terrain by dynamically adjusting its gait. And it can climb. And jump. And walk on ice. And walk on two legs. And lots of other things!

Ghost Minitaur™ Highly Agile Direct-Drive Quadruped Demonstrates Why Legged Robots are Far Superior to Wheels and Tracks When Venturing Outdoors

Ghost Robotics, a leader in fast and lightweight direct-drive (gearless) legged robots, announced today that its patent-pending Ghost Minitaur™ has been updated with advanced reactive behaviors for navigating grass, rock, sand, snow and ice fields, urban objects and debris, and vertical terrain.

The latest gaits adapt reactively to unstructured and dynamic environments to maintain balance, ascend steep inclines (up to 35º), handle curb-sized steps in stride (up to 15cm), crouch to fit under crawl spaces (as low as 27cm), and operate at variable speeds and turning rates. Minitaur’s high-force capabilities enable it to leap onto ledges (up to 40cm) and across gaps (up to 80cm). Its high control bandwidth allows it to actively balance on two legs, and high speed operation allows its legs to manipulate the world faster than the blink of an eye, while deftly reacting to unexpected contact.

ELS: Why School Leaders Need To Be Trained Like Jet Pilots

Imagine you are a newly promoted principal, replacing a principal who’d left the job after only one year. Right before your first staff meeting you are confronted with a challenge with which you have no experience: a teacher comes to you in great distress because she is being bullied by a fellow teacher. If you are uncertain how to proceed, you’re not alone.

Exyn unveils AI to help drones fly autonomously, even indoors or off the grid

A startup called Exyn Technologies Inc. today revealed AI software that enables drones to fly autonomously, even in dark, obstacle-filled environments or beyond the reaches of GPS. A spin-out of the University of Pennsylvania’s GRASP Labs, Exyn uses sensor fusion to give drones situational awareness much like a human’s.

In a demo video shared by the company with TechCrunch, a drone using Exyn’s AI can be seen waking up and taking in its surroundings. It then navigates from a launch point in a populated office to the nearest identified exit without human intervention. The route is not pre-programmed, and pilots did not manipulate controls to influence the path that the drone takes. They simply tell it to find and go to the nearest door.

PolyAurum Wins Mid Atlantic Bio Angels 1st Pitch Life Science Philadelphia Competition

Mid Atlantic Bio Angels (MABA) announces today that PolyAurum, Inc. ( was chosen as “Best in Show” at MABA’s Philadelphia 1st Pitch Life Science event, which took place at the Cira Center on September 15, 2016.  PolyAurum is a preclinical stage biotechnology company focused on the development and commercialization of biodegradable gold nanoparticles (BGNPs) for the treatment of cancer.

Ghost Robotics’ Minitaur Quadruped Conquers Stairs, Doors, and Fences and Is Somehow Affordable

Bipedal and quadrupedal locomotion has been an ongoing challenge for robots. There’s been a lot of progress over the last few years, though, especially when it comes to dynamic motions: not just walking without falling over but also climbing, running, jumping, and more. This is the real value of legs: They enable robots to deal with the kinds of obstacles and terrain and situations that wheels and tracks can’t.

Getting quadrupeds to do these kinds of useful and fun things requires that a) you know what you’re doing and b) you have a robot that can do what you want it to do. Unfortunately, building legged quadrupeds is difficult, expensive, and time consuming. There is a small handful of bespoke research quadrupeds doing some very good work, but for the rest of us, having to actually do all of the hardware stuff is a major obstacle that makes it difficult to focus on the software, which is where the potential for real-world applications comes in.

Newest Resident at Port Business Incubator Plans to Disrupt Cancer Treatment

Quantitative Radiology Solutions is the latest company to hang its shingle at the University City Science Center’s Port Business Incubator.

By taking up residency at the Port, Quantitative gains access to an extensive network of resources to grow its business. Quantitative is also a participant in the Phase I Ventures Program, which allows early-stage companies to test their business feasibility in a low-risk environment. Quantitative received $213,000 in direct financing from P1V and additional grants from the National Institutes of Health and the National Science Foundation.

BluePen Biomarkers Announces Collaboration with the University of Pennsylvania

The University of Pennsylvania has co-founded and structured BluePen Biomarkers in collaboration with BluePrint Bio, Inc. and Emerald Logic, Inc. to conduct biomarker research and identification. BluePen is creating a comprehensive biomarker measurement and discovery pipeline for the acceleration of personalized medicine.

BluePen will collaborate with Ian Blair, PhD, the A.N. Richards Professor of Systems Pharmacology and Translational Therapeutics and Director of Center for Cancer Pharmacology in the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania.