Robots that can sort recycling – sounds like a Slobot dream!

I have several large bins full of the plastic bits and parts that I use to make a Slobot sculpture. As much as I paint and sculpt robots, I don’t really get into making robots that “do” stuff. I do, however keep all sorts of plastic pieces – cups, bowls, bottles ,etc. A couple of these recycle sorting robots seem like something it would be great to have around the shop to help get me organized….

From the article on MIT news:

It’s surprisingly hard to develop machines that can distinguish between paper, plastic, and metal, which shows how impressive a feat it is for humans. When we pick up an object, we can immediately recognize many of its qualities even with our eyes closed, like whether it’s large and stiff or small and soft. By feeling the object and understanding how that relates to the softness of our own fingertips, we are able to learn how to handle a wide range of objects without dropping or breaking them.

via MIT news