It's Friday, so why shouldn't you enjoy 70 seconds of flying, crashing robotic calamity?

For the curious, this is what some have called a true-to-life transformer, an iRobot PackBot outfitted with a gas-powered propeller engine and a steerable parafoil. The concept, dubbed the Griffon man-portable hybrid, was conceived and built by iRobot's Brian Yamauchi and Pavlo Rudakevych, and the video of the ill-fated test flight was shot sometime in the last three or four years. You can download a PDF of their Griffon research paper here.

And yes, to that one guy who plans on explaining that these are not actually "robots" because they operate by remote control rather than their own artificial intelligence: We get it. We just love the word. Robot Robot Robot!


Real-world transformers [New Scientist]