Spoiler: The video above shows SpaceX’s 100-foot-tall Grasshopper rocket blasting off, hovering in the air for about 30 seconds and then descending back to terra firma. And it’s set to Johnny Cash’s Ring of Fire. That’s it. There’s no drama, fireworks or anything shocking, but it’s still absurdly important and totally worth watching.
This launch marks the reusable rocket’s most significant flight yet. It reached a record 262.8 feet before lowering itself back down on its own launch pad. Elon Musk called it the Johnny Cash hover slam.
Designed to launch and land vertically on its metal legs, the Grasshopper is part of SpaceX’s long-term roadmap. The company has yet to reveal when it intends to use the model — or its successors — for space flight. The rocket has been in testing since September 2012, with each test launch reaching a bit closer to the stars above.
“The US is a country of explorers,” stated Musk at his SXSWi keynote adding “People need to believe that [space travel] is not going to bankrupt them.”
For several years Musk has championed the idea that humans must be a multi-planet species and a reusable rocket, like the Grasshopper here, is a big part of his grand vision.
By far the greatest challenge for robots with legs is staying upright when the going gets rough. A team at the University of Pennsylvania’s Kod*lab has a hunch that we don’t need extra smarts to make that happen — just an extra appendage. The upgraded X-RHex Lite (XRL) carries a tail that will swing in the right direction to keep the robot upright if it’s caught out by a fall, much like a cat. That’s impressive for a nearly 18-pound robot (the previous Tailbot was 0.4 pounds), but we’re pretty sure no feline has six springy legs; the XRL can crash to the ground and still get back up like it ain’t no thing, which gives it a fudge factor others don’t have. We don’t know if the hexapod critter will lead to more than further experiments. If there are fewer stuck rovers on future exploration missions, though, we’ll know who to thank.
3 Robosapiens 2 14" with Remotes One 7" Little One Humanoid WowWee All Work 2004 $49.99 (1 Bid)End Date: Friday May-24-2013 18:35:56 PDTBid now | Add to watch list WIRELESS RC SPIDER ROBOT #18144 ACADEMY SCIENCE MODEL KIT w/IR REMOTE CONTROLLER $47.00End Date: Sunday Jun-23-2013 14:41:20 PDTBuy It Now for only: $47.00Buy It Now | Add to watch list NEW VEX Robotics Design System Transmitter and Receiver Kit - with torn box. $39.99End Date: Sunday Jun-2-2013 5:38:52 PDTBuy It Now for only: $39.99Buy It Now | Add to watch listRelated Posts:
17-year old Canadian twelfth graders Mathew Ho and Asad Muhammad recently sent a LEGO minifig to 80,000-feet (~15 miles/24km/not really outerspace but still really damn high) with a weather balloon, and this is the video to prove it. The young men spent $ 400 and four months of Saturdays planning the minifig’s journey, but somehow managed to send him up without a helmet. You killed him! Besides that though, good lookin. Me? I’ve never sent anything anywhere. “But I thought you used to have that pen-pal in prison?” I don’t want to talk about him.
Hit the jump for a video of Buzz Legoyear’s journey in action.Related Posts:
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Microsoft XBox 360 Slim Kinect Star Wars Edition Console 320 GB In Box $202.50 (24 Bids)End Date: Friday May-24-2013 19:01:03 PDTBid now | Add to watch list Genuine Microsoft Kinect Sensor (Black) for Xbox 360 Game System, Works Great! $44.95End Date: Friday May-31-2013 9:44:12 PDTBuy It Now for only: $44.95Buy It Now | Add to watch list Genuine Microsoft (1414) Kinect Sensor Bar for Xbox 360 $39.99End Date: Sunday Jun-23-2013 13:08:21 PDTBuy It Now for only: $39.99Buy It Now | Add to watch listRelated Posts:
Question by Thecrazie: How many feet needs to be between me and my kinect? For the xbox 360. I ordered it online so it should be coming on monday-tuesday my living room has about 9 feet from where i would be putting the kinect to the couch.Is this enough room?
Answer by backpooper6about the size of my dick
What do you think? Answer below!Related Posts:
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This is one in a series of long-ass videos of a guy beating all of Super Mario 64 using nothing but his socked feet. He’s not physically challenged (mentally, sure) or anything, he just decided to give it a go. Impressive brobro, but I once beat a part of Assassin’s Creed with nothing but my mind. “That was a cut-scene.” Haha, you got me. I was super high though so I really did think I was playing.
Hit the jump for a demo and the link to a page containing videos of every level (although why the f*** you’d want to watch all that is beyond me).Related Posts:
As a fan of barefoot shoes I jumped (not very high, because you don’t get a lot of air with bare feet) at the chance to try out Fila’s new Skele-Toes EZ Slide barefoot shoes AKA the crazy monkey shoes not made by Vibram.
These shoes are marketed as “casual” monkey shoes and are not designed for running. They are, luckily, fairly attractive in a “weird dude who wears barefoot shoes” kind of way but the first thing you’ll notice is that they have four toes instead of five. This is the EZ part of the name and they make them considerably easier to put on and take off. They also make you feel like Fred Flintstone.
They’re quite sturdy, with a thick rubber sole (relatively thick when compared to Vibrams) and two huge velcro straps along the heel and instep. The shoes fit more like sneakers than running shoes which is obviously why Fila is selling these to casual users. Sadly, most of this odd design is intentional. Vibram recently sued Fila for patent infringement and I suspect most of the 2.0 improvements are based on not trying to look like Five Fingers shoes.
I wore these around the neighborhood last weekend and did a bit of biking in them. While I don’t want to equate them with 21st century Crocs, I worry that this style may soon trickle out of the world of high-performance running (and the fat people like me who think barefoot running helps them a bit on their short runs) and into the world of backyard barbecues and 30-something Dads toddling through Disneyland, much as I imagine myself doing in the next few years.
I found the Skele-Toes to be quite comfortable if slightly less abrasively ugly than Vibrams. Fila made these into sports shoes rather than performance foot gloves and while I wouldn’t go marathoning in them they’re fine for treadmills and biking. At $ 60 they’re also a bit less expensive than Five Fingers ($ 80 for the Sprints, for example and few online sales to be found). I’m generally inclined to recommend these to folks who may want to dip a toe (chortle) into barefoot running but, to be clear, these aren’t “performance” shoes. However, for six bills (and these are Filas so they’ll probably go on sale sooner than later), you’ve got some conversation starters, to be sure.
Click to view slideshow.