Small cubes that self-assemble

Small cubes that self-assemble

Known as M-Blocks, the robots are cubes with no external moving parts. Nonetheless, they’re able to climb over and around one another, leap through the air, roll across the ground, and even move while suspended upside down from metallic surfaces.

Inside each M-Block is a flywheel that can reach speeds of 20,000 revolutions per minute; when the flywheel is braked, it imparts its angular momentum to the cube. On each edge of an M-Block, and on every face, are cleverly arranged permanent magnets that allow any two cubes to attach to each other.

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Video: Melanie Gonick, MIT News

50 replies
  1. franky rivera
    franky rivera says:

    It doesn’t work…. even by their own statement it has a rotation piece inside which on a spin stop makes it move so the cube can only go rotate forward or backwards…. Even by their examples the cube is only moving in one direction.

  2. فيصل الزهراني
    فيصل الزهراني says:

    I fear that the emergence of AI driven totalitarian system might not remain a mere sci-fi for long. Once these machines are given self-awareness along with self-assembling, they will evolve themselves and eventually endanger the very existence of the human race.

  3. Toàn Đào
    Toàn Đào says:

    it is incredible!!
    remind me to the transformer series.
    Imagine every machine made from those tiny cube like this, and then we can tell them to make whatever we want o.O

  4. James Sailors
    James Sailors says:

    That’s a baby step into something real huge. Say perhaps a whole building relocating itself to avoid a natural disaster. Or if it was different material it could be a shifting of stronger protection to any direction like putting up a shield or even an assault. I mean the whole Idea of it is just huge.

  5. Joe M
    Joe M says:

    I want to see these in space add a few solar panels and thrusters and idk 1,000,000 more doing space tasks many connect it to a computer on earth so it can make it’s own moves fit for the task and idk fix the space station or build a new one or do some deep space operation task

  6. BioClone
    BioClone says:

    Key Step for future building with nanobots…

    You dont realize for what its this… the day all goverment buildings will be based on a single room with "moving walls" with a system similar to this… you will notice how much space can be saved (because you could use every building for a lot of things) same way today we do Stadiums, and later we turn them on a opera/sport colliseum/theater/hospital, etc…

    Next step would be buildings on which structure its mostly based on those ones (nanobots) however, that will be harder to develop… and to get aproved because would need to meet a lot of safety laws…

  7. David Snyder
    David Snyder says:

    Quit messing around with these silly blocks ! Make them super small ,and you could have a sofa that turns into a bed that turns into a lazy boy ,that turns into a desk that turns into a car that turns into a what ever ! ! You only ever need a pile of blocks to have everything you need !!

  8. _Paws_
    _Paws_ says:

    There can be shelves and drawers that assemble themselves or rearrange themselves if they can build and program such machines. The MIT team could make it easier for themselves if their drawers, tool-boxes, and cases assisted them if their machines can accomplish such feats shown in the video.
    Of course there is a time and place for such things later on.

  9. CakeMonsey
    CakeMonsey says:

    What kind of motors are used in these? Do they spin fast or how do they create that momentum? Can someone please explain? Thanks!

  10. Raven's Quote
    Raven's Quote says:

    I wonder if RFID technology could be used to eliminate on board power for these things. Don’t get me wrong I’m aware that RFID is usually used to power practically microscopic systems with minuscule power demands, but it’s a thought.

  11. Dread Simulator - 4K fucking your mom
    Dread Simulator - 4K fucking your mom says:

    now make this on the nanoscale and yu have those stupidly retard transforming decepticons that we thought were just lazy animaitons!

  12. Rakesh Sharma
    Rakesh Sharma says:

    try to activate 100 bots at same time to form some 2d pattern and after that activate those sub 2d pattern to form some 3d pattern see what happens


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