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News From the Field

For Robust Robots, Let Them Be Babies First


January 20, 2011

robot built from Legos In a first-of-its-kind experiment, a University of Vermont scientist created robots that, like tadpoles becoming frogs, change their body forms while learning how to walk. These evolving robots learned to walk more rapidly than robots with fixed bodies and developed a more robust gait. The research suggests that the quest for adaptive and resilient robots can arrive at better designs by encouraging co-evolution of a robot's body and "brain" (controller) at the same time. Full Story

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University of Vermont

The National Science Foundation (NSF) is an independent federal agency that supports fundamental research and education across all fields of science and engineering. In fiscal year (FY) 2016, its budget is $7.5 billion. NSF funds reach all 50 states through grants to nearly 2,000 colleges, universities and other institutions. Each year, NSF receives more than 48,000 competitive proposals for funding and makes about 12,000 new funding awards. NSF also awards about $626 million in professional and service contracts yearly.

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