• Question: Have you ever invented any kind of robot?

    Asked by deshfix123 on 24 Apr 2020.
    • Photo: Katherine Benson

      Katherine Benson answered on 24 Apr 2020:

      I’ve never invented a robot (not yet anyway!), but I’ve used lots of robots in the lab when running my experiments. They can help us to speed things up, and do jobs for us so we can do other things while they’re working.

    • Photo: Jun Lin

      Jun Lin answered on 24 Apr 2020:

      I have never been invented a robot but I have seen a fantastic robot which won a science prize back in college. It could dance! I think in the future we’ll see a lot of robots helping and entertaining people in our real life!

    • Photo: Maria Isabel Meza Silva

      Maria Isabel Meza Silva answered on 24 Apr 2020:

      Unfortunately no! But I have seen my colleagues programming robots to do all different kind of stuff (including dancing!)

      The closest I have gotten to building a robot myself was building a robotic arm with cardboard, syringes and water. It didn’t need any power to work! This is the video I followed in case any of you want to try it out in your spare time (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6HSY3R5EY8o&t=607s) It was very fun!

    • Photo: Ollie Otter

      Ollie Otter answered on 24 Apr 2020:

      I dismantled a drone and used the components to build my own robot for my experiments and wrote the computer code to control it.
      It looks nothing like the classical science fiction robot (doesn’t resemble a person in any way) but I use it to simulate wind force in our lab.

    • Photo: Louise Mc Grath

      Louise Mc Grath answered on 24 Apr 2020:

      Hi desjfix123,

      No I have not! I wish I did. I had considered a career in robotic engineering but chemistry won! I hope I get the chance to build one, I may need help from experts!

    • Photo: Dimitar Shterionov

      Dimitar Shterionov answered on 24 Apr 2020:

      No, I haven’t invented a robot. But recently I worked on a real robot to make it speak English :).

    • Photo: Simon Spichak

      Simon Spichak answered on 24 Apr 2020:

      I’ve played around with developing very simple ‘robots’ with the Arduino (https://www.arduino.cc/) platform. It comes with a very small computer and different small devices that you can add onto your ‘robot’. For example, I made a very simple one that lights up an LED light whenever the temperature in my room reached a certain temperature!

    • Photo: Yashdeep Yashdeep

      Yashdeep Yashdeep answered on 24 Apr 2020:

      I have never invented a robot but I built a really simple line following robot when I was in school. You can also build a robot like that which follows the lines drawn on the floor by itself and make it do fun things, like carrying things from the kithcen to your room.

    • Photo: Michelle Monaghan

      Michelle Monaghan answered on 24 Apr 2020:

      I’ve never invented a robot, but I love the idea. I might look into how I can do that someday. Thanks for the idea!

    • Photo: Gustavo Velasco-Hernandez

      Gustavo Velasco-Hernandez answered on 24 Apr 2020: last edited 24 Apr 2020 12:33 pm

      Robots have so many parts that usually it is a team that create them. I haven’t invented any, but once we made a robot with 2 wheels that needed to keep its balance, like a Segway. We were 3 people so it was like 30cm/12 inches tall. After that, I have worked in already created wheeled robots helping them to go from one place to another following a route, avoiding obstacles and without crashing :), like a self-driving car.

    • Photo: Amy Heather Fitzpatrick

      Amy Heather Fitzpatrick answered on 24 Apr 2020:

      Just like Katherine I have used robots in the lab but I have never invented one! It would be pretty cool to try and come with one and I would love to learn.

    • Photo: Hannah Currivan

      Hannah Currivan answered on 24 Apr 2020:

      I have not invented any kind of robot, but I hope to build my own robot using a RaspberryPi kit which you can buy online!!!

    • Photo: Tommy Hayden

      Tommy Hayden answered on 24 Apr 2020:

      Haven’t invented one but it a previous job I worked on design of custom automation
      That meant I drew loads of different accessories for robots (grippers for pick and place etc.)

      Not exactly a robot because it’s not automatic, but I’ve just drawn up parts for a pick and place arm that can be powered by syringes as a toy for my sons to play with. I’ve ordered the parts to be laser cut from plastic but cardboard cut with scissors would do the job too

      Loads of videos on youtube showing syringe powered toys if you’re feeling creative

    • Photo: Rory Ward

      Rory Ward answered on 24 Apr 2020:

      I’ve never invented a robot, but I did work with one. I programmed one to complete an obstacle course. I used an Arduino board which you can buy online and is a great way to start working with robots.

    • Photo: Aisling Ryan

      Aisling Ryan answered on 24 Apr 2020:

      I’ve never invented a robot! In science there are lots of different things scientists can invent. Robots are something an engineer could invent. As a chemist I invent medicines instead of robots! But I think robot inventions are very cool.

    • Photo: Hazel Rooney

      Hazel Rooney answered on 26 Apr 2020:

      Unfortunately, I haven’t had the opportunity to invent a robot yet. I’m an animal scientist and work with pigs so maybe someday I will invent a pig robot that can play with the real pigs on our farm!

    • Photo: Fiona Malone

      Fiona Malone answered on 26 Apr 2020:

      Yes! I make robots called biosimulators, that mimic different body parts. If a company wants to design or test a device to treat something like, for example, a stent for heart disease, I can build a robot that would behave like a diseased heart. I have made a robot that mimics a stroke and a swallowing robot.

    • Photo: Mary Anne Ryan

      Mary Anne Ryan answered on 27 Apr 2020:

      No but I could use one to clean the house should you invent one..

    • Photo: Roisin Jones

      Roisin Jones answered on 27 Apr 2020:

      Sadly no, I’m not really mechanically minded! I do think robots are incredibly cool though, I love seeing the things that other people have invented.

    • Photo: Chloe Matthews

      Chloe Matthews answered on 27 Apr 2020:

      I’ve never invented a robot, but I get to work with lots of cool robots when working in the lab. They mainly help speed up our work for us.

    • Photo: Enda O'Connell

      Enda O'Connell answered on 27 Apr 2020:

      I work with robots every day but haven’t had to invent one yet. You can see a picture of my lab robot called ‘Janus’ in my bio (/green-zone/profile/endaoconnell/). It probably doesn’t look like you’d image but it is really useful for the type of work I do with other scientists.

      We take thousands of human cells (e.g. cancer cells, stem cells) and add them to little dishes called plates that have 96 or 384 separate compartments called wells. Each well gets about 10,000 cells and a different chemical (e.g. an existing medicine, a toxin, an environmental extract from different species of animals or plants). We can do this for tens of thousands of chemicals at once, each one with its own well and cell population.

      Then we look at what happens, either using a microscope or a colour changing dye. If we get an interesting result from a particular chemical (e.g. we kill the caner cell or change the stem cell) then we look at the chemical in more detail and it could become a new medicine or a new use for an existing medicine.

      This kind of work can be done by hand, but when looking at lots of chemicals, it can often work out much cheaper, faster and more precise if you automate it with a robot.

    • Photo: Anna Zakrzewska

      Anna Zakrzewska answered on 28 Apr 2020:

      No but I invented a few mechanisms to automate and control the telecommunication networks. You can see them as robots, since they are programmable and perform very complex tasks that would take much more time for humans to do.

    • Photo: Lucy Blennerhassett

      Lucy Blennerhassett answered on 28 Apr 2020:

      Short answer: nope!

    • Photo: Michael Nolan

      Michael Nolan answered on 1 May 2020:

      Not directly. But our work on laying down very thin materials for electronic devices could be important for the electronic components at the heart of the robot
      (BTW, do you know robot translates from Czech as “slave”)

    • Photo: Sonia Lenehan

      Sonia Lenehan answered on 11 May 2020:

      No I have never invented a robot! That would be cool though!