Cubli: A Balancing, Walking Cube

Chris Higgins
YouTube / Gajamohan Mohanarajah
YouTube / Gajamohan Mohanarajah / YouTube / Gajamohan Mohanarajah

From the "What Sorcery is This?!" department comes Cubli, a robotic cube that can "jump" and balance on a corner (!). It can also perform a controlled fall, which gives it the rather creepy ability to "walk" by jumping onto a corner, falling onto a face, and repeating the process. Behold:

Uh. I, for one, welcome our new cube robot overlords.

Here are some more videos from the Institute for Dynamic Systems and Control in Switzerland, showing a little more of the device. First, a "one-dimensional" prototype, just showing how a square version of the device works to balance on a corner:

And here's a lab video from January showing a prototype (note how it topples over at the end -- progress has been made since January!):

For more on this (including diagrams and such), head over to Robohub and read up! The device is still in the research stage at the moment, but I can see this being the super-expensive executive desk toy (and perhaps robot overlord) of the future.