U of M CSE Announces New Master’s Degree in Robotics, Paves Way For Bright or Doomed Future

by Alex Skjong

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Sometimes, you read news that’s equal parts exciting and potentially terrifying. Case in point — the University of Minnesota College of Science and Engineering announced it will be offering a new master’s degree in robotics.

Folks, I’ve seen “Terminator.” You’ve seen “Terminator.” We all know where this is headed.

But until an intrepid Gopher engineer pulls back a curtain and proudly reveals a T-800, the addition of the degree represents a step forward from the university in answering the need for robotics engineers and scientists worldwide. Medicine, manufacturing, transportation, agriculture — what aren’t robots involved with these days (he said in his most convincing Seinfeld impression)?

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The Future Needs to Hurry: Dunwoody Hosts Autonomous Snowplow Competition

by Alex Skjong

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Dunwoody College of Technology hosted the 10th Annual Autonomous Snowplow Competition (created by the Institute of Navigation) on Jan. 18, and since most of the area is still nursing fresh mental wounds from the recent snow emergency (especially if you got ticketed or towed), now seems like the perfect time to spotlight some brave — and obviously very smart — souls working to improve snow removal for the masses.

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They’re Watching: Top 10 Countries Filmed by Drones in 2019

by Alex Skjong

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Even though the outdoor buzz you hear is usually mosquitoes (Minnesota, amirite?), the sound can increasingly be attributed to a much more robotic source. More and more drone enthusiasts are sending their devices skyward and capturing incredible footage in the process, but wouldn’t it be interesting to know what countries were filmed the most?

…oh, there’s a list? Well, that’s convenient.

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CES 2020: The 16 Minnesota Companies Strutting Their Stuff

by Alex Skjong

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It’s 2020, folks. We’re officially in “years that sound like sci-fi dates” territory, and there’s no better way to kick off the arrival of the future than by looking ahead to the… future of the future?

While I’m busy sorting out the timelines in my noggin, 16 Minnesota companies are getting ready to present their products at CES ® (January 7-10). From quadcopter cameras to advertising insight, here’s how l’étoile du nord is being represented in Las Vegas this week.

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BETA Startup Showcase: Rover Robotics

by Valerie Lockhart

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BETA Startup: Rover Robotics LogoThe TECHdotMN team would like to introduce you to each of the startups featured in the upcoming BETA showcase. Over the next couple of weeks, we will highlight each company, so you can get a better idea of the talent, hardwork, and dedication held within each of these startups.

The next company in our BETA Startup Showcase series is: Rover Robotics

Rover Robotics sells affordable, industrial-grade robots that are ROS enabled. Perfect for research application or for industrial use.
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Mortenson Unveils Partnership With Built Robotics Startup

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Via Twin Cities Business

“Do robots have a future in the construction industry? Golden Valley-based Mortenson, one of the 20 largest builders in the U.S., is embracing the robotic future through a new strategic partnership with San Francisco-based Built Robotics.

Mortenson has already used Built Robotics’ equipment on three projects and has plans for more in the pipeline. Mortenson announced the partnership at the Engineering News-Record’s FutureTech conference, a construction technology forum held this week in San Francisco.”

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Drone-For-Selfies Hits $100k+ On IndieGoGo

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Via News Release

“MINNEAPOLIS–(BUSINESS WIRE)–AirSelfie announces the launch of the preorder campaign for the AIR PIX, the next generation of the original AirSelfie, engineered with more features for a revolutionary new user experience that will change selfie taking forever. AIR PIX is the brand new personal selfie photographer that can autonomously capture every moment in life just while it’s happening. It fits in your pocket and is always ready to shoot anytime, anywhere from a cool new perspective, impossible with a handheld camera.”

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UMN Researchers Pair Soft Robotics With Textiles

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Via Advanced Textile Source

“At last week’s Smart Fabrics Virtual Summit, sponsored by IFAI, Brad Holschuh, Ph.D., assistant professor of wearable technology and apparel design in the College of Design at the University of Minnesota (UMN), gave a presentation titled, “Soft-Robotic Textiles Using Integrated Active Materials.” In his talk, he noted the many materials and their capabilities that can be useful in soft robotic applications, particularly in shape memory functions.”

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Pohlad’s PaR Systems Has A New CEO

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Via News Release

“MINNEAPOLIS, Jan. 30, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — The Pohlad Companies, a privately held portfolio of businesses and investments spanning a variety of industries, today announced that effective February 4, 2019, Tom Pohlad, president and COO of Carousel Motor Group (CMG), will become CEO of PaR Systems LLC, a leading provider of automation, robotics and specialized material handling solutions.”

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