You don’t need a huge amount of technical knowledge to make this robot. All you need is a screwdriver and a 3D printer.
Plen2 is a robot kit that you build yourself. It comes with control boards, servometers and accessories. Once built, Plen2 stands just under 8 inches tall.
Natsuo Akazawa, CEO of Plen Project Company, reckons it will “revolutionise the relationship between humans and robots”. Though it’s a bit hard to take him seriously when the video cuts to a Plen2 dressed exactly like him, even with the same hair. No doubt that’s to ram home the fact the robot can mimic humans. Still, it’s a lot of fun.
It uses open-source software, so you can tweak how it’s controlled and give it new skills. Because you make it yourself, you can change how it looks. You choose how to control it too: using a smartphone app, body movements, facial expressions, mild electrics and even brainwaves.
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We’re all for robot pals, especially ones that can educate as well as entertain. We can’t vouch for how easy it is to use without getting our hands on one. But it certainly ticks the cuteness box.
It’s raised over $18,000 of a $40,000 funding target and has 49 days to go. If successful, it should ship in August.