A group of researchers from the University of California, Berkeley has managed to win themselves a science and engineering prize for programming a robot that sorts leg wear.
The Sockification robot is capable of pairing socks
, after first identifying that they need turning inside out, before putting one neatly inside the other.
Ping Chuan Wang, Stephen Miller, Mario Fritz, Trevor Darrell, Pieter Abbeel won $5,000 (£3,227) for their achievement.
The challenge was set by the founder of Willow Garage, Scott Hassan, who told participants to get the PR2 robot to do something "cool, funny, or useful", although clarified this by adding that the "competition should not interfere with your work or research duties".
Elsewhere, researchers from the University of the Basque Country in Spain have developed a robot which they claim is capable of differentiating between a door and its handle, demonstrating a basic capability to perceive material differences between two objects.
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Posted by Davina Horne