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Crowd Funded Programmable Robot Spider Sneaks into Action

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In a remarkable example of how crowd funding can bring dreams to reality, Beijing-based Vincross has launched a six-legged programmable robot called HEXA. According to TechNode, Kickstarter-funded HEXA is said to be able to perform search and rescue missions, dance, and even offers its own ecosystem and skill store.

Boasting an incredible array of abilities and features, such as walking, climbing, carrying objects, a 720p camera, night vision, a gravity sensor, an accelerometer, an infrared transmitter, WiFI, and wireless charging, HEXA is unlike anything I have ever seen.

What’s even more impressive about this robot is that its ecosystem, MIND, allows developers to contribute code to a skill store, use a mobile app, as well as access a 3D simulator so they can use a virtual on-screen HEXA to perform tests.

In fact, this ecosystem is what may end up being the differentiator, rather than the hardware itself, given the fact that there are many companies releasing robots these days. Beta testers have already created some other skills to add to HEXA, such as allowing the robot to recognize items nearby and move toward them. The possibilities here are astounding; imagine programming self-learning into the robot, as well as jumping, flying, and communicating with other robots or even people.

Currently, Vincross is hoping that developers will contribute to the ecosystem with code additions to allow HEXA to conduct search and rescue tasks as well as provide home security functions. The company hopes that newer additions of the robot will be able to climb higher stairs, cross more difficult terrain, and possess more sensors. In terms of cybersecurity features, HEXA uses encryption that prevents intercepted data from being readable, and the robot is able to detect outside attacks, such as man-in-the-middle attacks.

Despite having raised a $7 million round of funding, Vincross is proceeding with a Kickstarter launch to generate a batch of orders. Designed and manufactured in China, HEXA is planned to go on sale on JD.com.

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