Robots have traditionally been roughly humanoid in form, which has some obvious advantages, in that the robots are better able to integrate into a human-designed environment. But there are lots of environments that aren’t human designed, and researchers have been experimenting with robotic forms that look more like insects or fish. Now, a team of Swiss researchers has produced a robot that looks like nothing more than a walking circuit board. Despite its small size, though, the robot is able to move by hopping, leaping, or walking, and it can even work in a group to coordinate activities.
The team calls its creation Tribot, for reasons that are obvious from its photo above. Tribot looks like a tiny circuit board because that’s what it largely is, but there are some significant additions to the circuitry.