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Avengers, Assemble! That could very well be the rallying cry of MIT’s M-Blocks, which so happen to be a new class of robotic cubes which are aware of one another, and are fully capable of a self assembling process. This is the premise th...
Avengers, Assemble! That could very well be the rallying cry of MIT’s M-Blocks, which so happen to be a new class of robotic cubes which are aware of one another, and are fully capable of a self assembling process. This is the premise that was explored by the T-1000 in the movie Terminator 2, except that such a cyborg from the future was made out of liquid metal. Well, there is also the Transformers in the science fiction realm as well, where they are a race of humanoid robots that can transform into machines – vehicles especially. Just how far along is humankind to achieving such wonders? MIT’s John Romanishin, Daniela Rus, and Kyle Gilpin could have taken a wee step closer with the M-Blocks self assembling robotic cubes. These simple yet independent modules are able to separate and recombine at will, letting you have the freedom to design a robot that will sport flexible functionality. The M-Blocks’ movement are self contained, which means there are no external moving parts. This is made possible thanks to a 20,000 RPM flywheel that will impart angular momentum to each cube, letting them make their way across the floor, roll over one another, and even have the ability to leap around. Hence, you get a system that will be able to join together to develop a shape, before breaking apart and assembling into a different shape altogether. Pretty neat, no? Follow: Robots, mit, MIT M-Blocks Are Self Assembling Robots original content from Ubergizmo.
about 2 hours ago
Posted On Today at 01:57:13 pm EDT by Blargh [Reply] [Quote] [New] Quote:Hi all. Long time no post. Anyhow, I've caught the first two episodes of Agents of SHIELD. So far, so good, but I'm still crossing my fingers and hoping ...
Posted On Today at 01:57:13 pm EDT by Blargh [Reply] [Quote] [New] Quote:Hi all. Long time no post. Anyhow, I've caught the first two episodes of Agents of SHIELD. So far, so good, but I'm still crossing my fingers and hoping for some of my favorite supers to show up. So it occurred to me this week that the Grant Ward character uses named, possibly AI flying robots similar to Armada. It's probably a stretch and the name is obviously different, but does anyone know the rules on minor Spiderman characters appearing in TV or movies? They obviously couldn't use the Green Goblin, but what about guys like Cardiac? ...I don't know why they couldn't use Green Goblin and not Cardiac. There's nothing that's been said about the Sony media writes on Spider-Man that would include some Spidey villains but not others (with the notable Kingpin exception, which was part of Daredevil rights before Fox let them revert back to Marvel). It is known that Marvel, post Disney merger, renegotiated the animated television rights for the few franchises that are still held by other movie studios, that being the F4, X-Men, and Spider-Man. This probably extends to video games as well. It is generally accepted that the rights held by outside studios (Sony with Spider-Man, Fox with F4 and X) aren't so much movie rights but live action rights. These re-negotiated animated rights probably led to the early demise of Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes, Spectacular Spider-Man, and Wolverine and the X-Men. So no, we won't be getting any Spider-Man or Spider-Man related stuff in SHIELD. And there's really no need to. There's so much to draw from and most of Spider-Man's villains probably wouldn't work too well in a universe without him. And the few that would probably have a Avengers/larger MU character that is close enough to work. We'll still have Ultimate Spider-Man (unfortunately), and Spidey might pop up in the related shows "Avengers Assemble" and "Hulk and the Agents of SMASH" but that's about it.
about 2 hours ago
Rockstar's marketing budget seems to have paid off. Not only has Grand Theft Auto V generated more $1 billion in revenue, it has also set a new bar for entertainment sales altogether. Guinness World Records confirmed on Tuesday that GTA ...
Rockstar's marketing budget seems to have paid off. Not only has Grand Theft Auto V generated more $1 billion in revenue, it has also set a new bar for entertainment sales altogether. Guinness World Records confirmed on Tuesday that GTA V has broken six sales world records, and a seventh for its trailer, since going on sale three weeks ago. Some of the enormous properties that GTA has now surpassed include Call of Duty, The Avengers and Avatar.Continue reading...
about 3 hours ago
The GoodThere have been a lot of little plot points that have either been unanswered or seemingly brushed aside and one of the biggest is what, exactly, Maximus’ device is actually for. That may have been the most burning, unanswered que...
The GoodThere have been a lot of little plot points that have either been unanswered or seemingly brushed aside and one of the biggest is what, exactly, Maximus’ device is actually for. That may have been the most burning, unanswered question in this series for me. Well, Jonathan Hickman has answered that question, and it’s one helluvan answer. We also get our first glance at Thane, the son of Thanos and one of the main reasons that Thanos decided to come to Earth after the Avengers left. While all this is going on, Thor is sent to negotiate the terms of surrender with the Builders, because when you think diplomat, you think the drunkest, rowdiest Avenger. So yes, there is definitely something else going on. The writing in this book remains absolutely top-notch, balancing great characterization with absolutely top-notch action. A complaint I’ve seen is that the characters aren’t really developing, but I’ve never thought an event like this is for “development” as much as it is “solidifying.” Despite the vast, far-reaching cast, every character is written as they should be and it’s especially great seeing Captain America’s mind used tactically from somewhere besides the front line. It’s like when creators remember that Spider-Man has a genius-level intellect or that Batman is an amazing detective: something not everyone does, but everyone should.Jerome Opeña and Dustin Weaver’s art is, as always, top-notch and with Justin Ponsor coloring both, the tone and styles meld to the point that I hardly noticed the shift. Maintaining pace and tone is absolutely critical for an issue and that is certainly the case here. But more than maintaining, the art is clean and eye-catching, when action occurs (which, again, is not terribly often), it has a bone-shaking impact, particularly as Black Bolt and Thanos square off, and the dialog scenes are well blocked, with the characters’ body language communicating as much as their words. Something that doesn’t often get praised enough are truly great backgrounds. It’s one of the most frequently cut corners, but that is never the case here and it gives every panel a great sense of place and context.The BadA very specific character’s fate is left very, very vague, seemingly intentionally so, but it also seems like a somewhat blatant misdirect. I could be wrong about this, and I actually hope I am, but it stuck out to me. We’re still not sure exactly WHY Thanos wants his son dead so badly as it seems to transcend his normal lust for killing. It’s fine that not everything has been explicitly spelled out, but even a hint or inkling would be nice.The VerdictInfinity remains an absolutely top-notch event book, one that’s easy to pick up on its own, but becomes richer the more side-titles you read. The core book stands perfectly, though, and should be an example to all future “event” books. This issue also retains a trend that I’ve very much enjoyed in that the tide begins to turn against the antagonist gradually, so the book’s finale seems less pulled from out of nowhere or reliant on a deus ex machina to snap its fingers and make everything okay again. The pacing is amazing, the plotlines are skillfully juggled, and the characters are riveting. Add to that the sharp, intense art and you’ve got one great issue of a spectacular event.
about 3 hours ago
The Dallas Cowboys, fresh off their track meet with the Denver Broncos, get their first crack at redemption against the Washington Redskins this Sunday night. RGIII rolls into town looking to replicate a performance for the ages from las...
The Dallas Cowboys, fresh off their track meet with the Denver Broncos, get their first crack at redemption against the Washington Redskins this Sunday night. RGIII rolls into town looking to replicate a performance for the ages from last year's Thanksgiving Day debacle. These two teams are responsible for one of the most storied rivalries in all of sports, and this week's contest should hold true to form. The Redskins enter the game with a 1-3 record and fresh off a bye week, and the Cowboys will be looking to get back to the .500 mark at 3-3. The implications of this game suddenly become huge for both teams not only in the division, but in the entire NFC landscape. The Cowboys, losers of three games marked mostly by self-inflicted wounds, will look to continue their offensive explosion by utilizing all of their weapons. A loss like the Cowboys just experienced could have very polar effects. On one hand, the offense could have been awakened by self-discovery, and a sign of good things to come, but conversely, a gut-punching loss could easily cause an offensive hangover. God knows this team can't rely on their defense right now. So how will the Cowboys avenge last weekend's loss, rebound and be ready for RGIII? The answer probably lies somewhere in the middle, but it's obvious which side of the ball will have to be the catalyst in a victory. The correct answer has two parts, and that is the Cowboys have no choice but to move on from last week and be ready, and Jason Garrett needs to keep this team focused in its preparation. Because, like it or not, bad knee or not, the Redskins and RGIII will be ready to play, they are well within striking distance in the NFC East, and Mike Shannahan most definitely has a blueprint on how to exploit the Cowboys defense. In fact, the whole world figured that one out. If Dallas is the team they want to be, then it's time to use last week's loss as fuel for an NFC East foe. Let's look at how this game will go down. Begin Slideshow
about 3 hours ago
It’s that time of the week again where we go over the events of last night’s Agents of SHIELD (officially dropping the periods) and recommend some comics for you to read. There are few spoilers if you missed the episode, but ...
It’s that time of the week again where we go over the events of last night’s Agents of SHIELD (officially dropping the periods) and recommend some comics for you to read. There are few spoilers if you missed the episode, but if you’re all caught up come learn about the new villain! Avengers #158 Last night’s episode introduced Franklin Hall, who Marvel fans may better know as Graviton. Hall first appeared in Avengers #158 all the way back in 1977. In the comics Hall gets his gravity powers when a teleportation experiment goes awry. That’s a little different than how things played out in the show last night. Of course in SHIELD we didn’t actually see Graviton. We saw Franklin Hall in a major event that will probably turn him into Graviton, but he’s not in a costume or anything. Though no one’s going to be surprised to see him again later this season. As for the Graviton of comics, his first story continues in: Avengers #159 Besides the second half of the Graviton story, issue #159 also sees Thor and Black Panther join the Avengers. There are a lot of cameo appearances by other heroes who all try to stop Graviton from destroying New York and taking over the world. So there you go. Get caught up on your Graviton knowledge before he comes back in a future episode. (via Marvel Database, images via Marvel) Meanwhile in related links Here’s what to read after SHIELD episode 2 “0-8-4″ And these are the ones we recommend after the pilot Fox is making a James Gordon TV show and we’re pumped
about 3 hours ago
Emma Peel returned to DVD yesterday and Spy Vibe is throwing an Avengers party to celebrate. Mini-killers (1969) was another low-budget effort to cash in on Rigg's Emma Peel persona. Made in Spain, this rare short was written and dir...
Emma Peel returned to DVD yesterday and Spy Vibe is throwing an Avengers party to celebrate. Mini-killers (1969) was another low-budget effort to cash in on Rigg's Emma Peel persona. Made in Spain, this rare short was written and directed by Wolfgang von Chmielewski (sounds like a diabolical mastermind), who had a brief career as production assistant and sometime writer for a German crime series in the late 1970s. Unlike our independent 8mm film yesterday, Diadem, Mini-Killers was a more bonafide production (by Accentfilm/Germany) and does appear on Dame Diana's official filmography. The video quality is quite poor, but Avengers fans do get to see Diana Rigg as a spy. The film also benefits from a host of fun 1960s conventions, like mini-dresses, sports cars, bikinis- and deadly explosive dolls that squirt acid. Enjoy! See Avengers Sing here. John Steed Talks here. Peeling off the Trenchcoats here. Avengers Sets here. Lost Avengers episodes return as Audio Books here. Emma Peel fashion designer John Bates here. Spy Vibe's look at Avengers fashion here. The Avengers are currently featured in a comic book series by Boom! Studios.Recent Spy Vibe posts: David Tennant's Ian Fleming audio books, The Prisoner & Captain Scarlet, Peter Asher, Gerry Marsden tour, Elio Petri on Blu-ray, Sophia Loren, new Beatles BBC album, new Hercule Poirot novel, Beatles fall 2013 releases, A Hard Days Night cinematographer dies, Magic Christian on Blu-ray, Early Beatles image archive, Julie Newmar, Erno Goldfinger, Hitchcock tributeRecent Ian Fleming posts on Spy Vibe: Erno Goldfinger, Ian Fleming Music Series links: Noel Coward, Whispering Jack Smith, Hawaiian Guitar, Joe Fingers Carr, new Ian Fleming Catalog, Jon Gilbert interview, Double 007 Designs, Bond audio book reissues, discovery of one of Ian Fleming's WWII Commandos, James Bond book covers, Ian Fleming's Playboy interview for Kindle, Spy Vibe's discovery of a rare Ian Fleming serialization, rare View to a Kill, Fleming's Royal gold typewriter, Ian Fleming's memorial address
about 5 hours ago
You know, I think Peter Capaldi is going to be just fine as Dr. Who... Dr. Jekyll And Mr. Hyde (Victor Fleming - 1941) - It's not that there's anything wrong with this version of the classic tale (after all, Lana Turner AND Ingrid B...
You know, I think Peter Capaldi is going to be just fine as Dr. Who... Dr. Jekyll And Mr. Hyde (Victor Fleming - 1941) - It's not that there's anything wrong with this version of the classic tale (after all, Lana Turner AND Ingrid Bergman grace the screen in all of their soft focus glory), but just that it pales somewhat in comparison to the 1931 Mamoulian version I had just watched a few days earlier. I suppose it's not that it pales so much as it is almost the exact same - not just in story, scenes and pacing, but also in set design (Jekyll's laboratory, Hyde's mistress' apartment, etc.). That's overstating it of course (the lab this time around has a spiffy expressionistic entrance to it) as there are numerous nice touches, but there's an energy to the earlier version that puts it several rungs up and gives it a stronger sense of dread. Still, a great story well told. Cat's Eye (Lewis Teague - 1985) - This compilation of three Stephen King stories is actually reasonably entertaining and moves at a decent clip. It's just that it isn't, you know, very good...It feels like it's had its legs cut out from under it as it gets far too goofy for its own good and never really builds any real concern or curiosity for its characters. Each story has a moment or two where things can go really dark, but they never give into it. James Woods is very James Woods in the first story (a good thing) and it's kind of fun to see the almost 30 year-old special effects (the obvious miniature cars, the dark outlines showing superimpositions, etc.), but it was all far too tame. I don't need gore or violence in a horror film, but the threat of something bad happening would have helped. Also (and I'm getting picky here), the references to King's books (Cujo, Christine, Pet Sematary) were just a little too obvious. That cat is awesome though - he's either very well trained or they followed him for years to get the right footage. The Lair Of The White Worm (Ken Russell - 1988) - There's a moment in this movie (right around 23:25) when it suddenly becomes readily apparent that this is a Ken Russell film. That moment is when things turn batshit crazy. It only lasts a minute or so and it's a hallucination of sorts, but it comes out of nowhere after a young woman touches a cross which has been sprayed with snake venom from another woman with fangs. OK, so there had already been a bit of craziness beforehand, but the great thing about the film is that it can take these insane segments and fit them in ever so perfectly with the rest of the story. As much fun as I had watching it, I think Amanda Donohoe must have had even way more fun filming it as the owner of a large estate looking for a virgin to sacrifice to the titular creature (she'll even go after boy scouts). Hugh Grant and Peter Capaldi (as Angus Flint - how great a name is that?) are having a high old time as well and it translates across to the audience. Warlock (Steve Miner - 1991) - It's not quite the "superbly crafted thriller" the DVD case says it is, but Julian Sands and Richard E. Grant combine to make this a fun ride. Oddly enough they both do it by remaining completely serious throughout the somewhat cheesy early-90s vibe the film gives off. Sands is a Warlock transported 300 years to the future in an effort to find all the pages to a book that will help "uncreate" everything God has done, while Grant chases him to the future to avenge his late wife (and save the world if at all possible). Lori Singer is an odd choice for the comic relief, but fortunately things never get too broad and never bog down in dull details or backstory. The film was released two years after its completion, but still managed to spawn two sequels - both of which I now need to track down.
about 5 hours ago
Walt Disney Co. (NYSE:DIS) debuted the first teaser for its animated Star Wars television series, Star Wars Rebels, on Monday in one of the first showings of Disney’s forthcoming push of its newly owned Star Wars property. Featurin...
Walt Disney Co. (NYSE:DIS) debuted the first teaser for its animated Star Wars television series, Star Wars Rebels, on Monday in one of the first showings of Disney’s forthcoming push of its newly owned Star Wars property. Featuring the voices of David Oyelowo and Freddie Prinze Jr., the series is set to premiere on Disney Channel as a one-hour special before debuting on Disney XD shortly after. The official teaser for Star Wars Rebels is the first glimpse of Disney’s planned expansion of the Star Wars franchise beyond the new film trilogy — the first of which is being directed by J.J. Abrams and is set to be released in 2015. While the news of Star Wars Episode VII has been dominating headlines, Star Wars Rebels might actually be a more interesting property for Disney when it comes to the studio’s bottom-line. While the animated series certainly won’t make the kind of money that Star Wars Episode VII is certain to generate, Star Wars Rebels points to Disney’s indirect benefits of its purchase of LucasFilm — the most lucrative of which will be merchandising. But for Disney, it’s newfound fortune is a reflection of its huge turnaround after the disastrous final years of Michael Eisner’s tenure as CEO. Since 2005, when Robert Iger was announced as Eisner’s successor, the company has been involved in a variety of blockbuster acquisitions that have led to a renaissance of Disney’s entertainment division. Starting with its purchase of Pixar in 2006 for $7.4 billion, Disney would later acquire Marvel Entertainment Inc. for $4.24 billion and LucasFilm in 2012 for an estimated $4.06 billion. While Disney’s acquisition of Pixar and Marvel have undoubtedly been huge successes for the once floundering studio, Disney’s purchase of the Star Wars franchise might represent the best investment of the bunch. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the Star Wars franchise has sold over $20 billion in licensed merchandise over the span of the series’ existence on top of $4.4 billion in tickets and $3.8 billion in home entertainment products. While George Lucas and Disney have had a working relationship dating back to 1986 when Lucas and the Walt Disney Imagineering division worked together to create the Star Tours attraction at Disneyland, a full-blown green light for Disney to market Star Wars merchandise and the media franchise seems perfectly suited to Disney’s growing entertainment empire. “It’s already an extraordinarily robust franchise without all that new content,” Bob Chapek, president of Disney’s consumer products unit, told the Los Angeles Times. “Imagine what’s going to happen when we have this succession of new movies,” he said, referring to the potential for merchandising over the coming years. The LA Times reports that retail sales of licensed products based on Disney brands generated $39.4 billion in the 2012 fiscal year — more than six times that of its nearest competitor. Much of Disney’s recent merchandise success can be attributed to Disney’s “Avengers” brand, which features toys and other products based around a variety of hugely popular superhero properties including Iron Man, Thor, and Captain America. “Since pre-Avengers, our Marvel business has basically doubled, not only as a function of movie content, but because we’re selling all the merchandise of the Avengers mythology,” Chapek explained. “We’re selling all of it under the umbrella of the Avengers, which is made possible because of the huge commercial success of that movie.” The Avengers, which was released in 2012, went on to gross $1.51 billion worldwide at the box office and the sequel, Avengers: Age of Ultron, is set to be released in 2015. Of course, given Star Wars’ legendary merchandising legacy on top of its media potential, there’s a strong chance that Star Wars could end u
about 5 hours ago
Frustrated that no one was actually going hungry in "The Hunger Games"? There's a movie for that. Ketchup Entertainment released the first trailer for "The Starving Games." The parody film comes from duo Jason Friedberg and Aaron Seltze...
Frustrated that no one was actually going hungry in "The Hunger Games"? There's a movie for that. Ketchup Entertainment released the first trailer for "The Starving Games." The parody film comes from duo Jason Friedberg and Aaron Seltzer who have brought us previous spoofs including "Epic Movie," "Disaster Movie" and "Vampires Suck." In addition to "The Hunger Games," "Starving Games" will parody movies ranging from "Avatar," "The Avengers," "Lord of the Rings," and "Oz the Great and Powerful." This will be the duo's sixth parody film of box-office blockbusters. Here's the synopsis for the film: "Set in the most depressing corner of a post-apocalyptic future, our hero Kantmiss Evershot (Maiara Walsh) volunteers to take her manipulative younger sister's place in the 75th annual "Starving Games." In doing so, she must leave behind her smoldering just-a-friend Dale (Brant Daugherty) and team up with the geeky baker's son Peter Malarkey (Cody Allen Christian) in a fight for her life. But wait, there's more! She could also win an old ham, a coupon for a footlong sub at a six-inch price, and a partially-eaten pickle!" "The Starving Games" is in theaters November 8 — two weeks ahead of "The Hunger Games." SEE ALSO: "Hunger Games" Barbie dolls are already back ordered past Christmas Join the conversation about this story »
about 5 hours ago