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Stanford designs space robot with gecko-like grippers

The special wedge-shaped grippers were created with space's atmosphere, and zero gravity, in mind.

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Space robot Stanford researchers have designed a new substance that echoes the geckos: a gripping surface that mirrors the way geckos hold on to surfaces without falling. The device has worked, gripping objects that are from flat and straight to curved, using wedge-shaped grippers that stick, like a gecko's foot, to a surface when pulled.

Stanford's idea in designing the device was to come up with a way to pick out space debris—items floating around above the Earth such as part of satellites. Space has unique properties making traditional retrieval methods such as suction and even adhesive less effective. Stanford has tested the device at Jet Propulsion Laboratory, and hope to get a prototype up to the International Space Station.


Smart home hero Best Buy has decided to jump aboard the smart home movement, and hard. Space at 700 of its stores will be dedicated to Amazon Echo and Google Home—and how the two play well with other smart home devices including Nest smart thermostats and Philips Hue light bulbs. One of the big deterrents to the adoption of smart home products is being unsure how to install them, make them work or if they'll connect to other products currently in the home. Best Buy is clearly aiming to be a smart home tech guru on this front.

IFTTT Smart Home Guide Looking for some quick ways to link your smart home devices together—and don't have a Best Buy near you? We curated the top 10 best IFTTT Applets that can help you use Alexa to warm up your bed, use your FitBit to start the coffee maker, and have Google Home take notes on Evernote. And there's even more.

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