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The Planar Elliptical Runner Balances Without Any AI

 - May 4, 2017
References: engadget & technologyreview
The Planar Elliptical Runner is yet another robot that demonstrates just how impressive the workings of nature really are. The ostrich-like robot was developed by researchers at the Institute for Human and Machine Cognition, but it doesn't use any of the institute's title attributes at all. The bot is able to balance itself and run with the use of just a motor -- it has neither an internal processor for AI nor any camera vision to speak of.

The Planar Elliptical Runner is able to achieve this self-balancing thanks to mechanics inspired by the ostrich. According to Technology Review, "the elliptical motion of the legs together with its body shape provide inherent stability." It runs on a single motor in the center of the bot's chassis, which can power it to speeds of 10 miles per hour. However, a scaled up version would be able to reach upwards of 30 miles per hour.