VIDEO: Norway's incredible rolling robot

The Local
The Local - [email protected] • 22 Apr, 2014 Updated Tue 22 Apr 2014 10:04 CEST
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This rolling spider-like robot is the stuff of sci-fi nightmares, so there's something strangely cute about watching the three-year-old son of its creator chase it around a basketball court.

Kåre Halvorsen, who works as a consultant engineer for the local Rogaland county, last week posted up two new videos of outdoor tests of his MorpHex rolling robot, one of which featured his son Torbjørn. 
 
Both the robot's self-powered roll, and the way it unfolds into a strange crab-like crawling thing, are brilliantly creepy. You can imagine hordes of them conquering the earth and terrorizing its inhabitants. 
 
However, Halvorsen claims his son doesn't see the robot as a potential killer. 
 
"He loves my robots, he’s my biggest fan," he told The Local. "Almost every day he wants me to take one of the robots so he can look at it and play with it. His favourite robot is the one called A-pod. It’s the one that looks like an ant." 
 
 
 
Halvorsen received 2.7 million hits on YouTube for a video of an earlier version of the rolling droid, but he downplays his achievements. 
 
"I am doing this for a hobby, so for me, I make it for the challenge," he said. "I don’t think anyone has made a robot exactly like this before, so for me as an engineer, I find many challenges just making it. I haven’t thought about an exact application." 
 
The 41-year-old was inspired to build the robot in 2010, after one of his children got a toy called a Bakugan, meaning 'exploding sphere', from Japan. 
 
Due to the magnets inside it, the spherical toy unfolds into a robot when placed on a metal plate. 
 
The robot in 2012 won the $10,000 Boca Bearing innovation prize, and kit versions of three of his robot designs are for sale in the US.  
 
Here's the hit YouTube video from 2010: 

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The Local 2014/04/22 10:04

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