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These tiny MIT-designed robots can transform for whatever job you need done

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The robot is nothing more than a cube on wheels. You wouldn’t think it could do all that much. But like a mechanical creature out of Wall-E, it’s adaptable. One moment, it’s a desktop fan. The next, it’s a piston moving your monitor up and down. The next, it’s an adorable toy car.

How is this possible? Because the robot is designed to change its outfit to suit the moment.

[Photo: MIT Media Lab]Hermits is the winner of Fast Company’s 2021 Innovation by Design Awards in the Student category. In research led by Ken Nakagaki, a researcher at MIT’s Tangible Media Group who recently accepted an assistant professorship at the University of Chicago, Nakagaki has created an imaginative new type of robot that, just like a hermit crab, can don a new shell at will. But while the crabs change shells to move their bodies into a larger house, Hermits change shells to........

© Fast Company

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