Aggressive Autonomous Quadrotor UAV Makes Its Moves
Take a look at this autonomous quadrotor UAV video from the GRASP lab at the University of Pennsylvania. These aggressive maneuvers are carried out with no outside direction.
(Autonomous UAV maneuvering)
The GRASP (General Robotics, Automation, Sensing and Perception) Lab is a $10 million research center has produced a number of remarkable devices, among them the CkBot Modular Robot That Self-Assembles when kicked apart (pretty slick video shows this process).
The maneuverability of this autonomous device made me think of two different sfnal devices. The first is the servo-optical stick-tight surveillance drone from Jack Vance's 1964 novel The Star King; it is described as " spy cell supported by rotary wings".
I also thought about the robot tracking devices from Philip K. Dick's 1960 novel Vulcan's Hammer, which were very quick-moving and maneuverable autonomous flying robots.