Robot "contraption" smashes Rubik record in 0.38 seconds

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Katz mentions that while a human player would loosen the cube up to make it easier to turn, a robot takes an opposite approach for solving the puzzle. A new addition to the list is this astonishing robot that can unravel a Rubik's 3D shape in 0.38 seconds.

A pair of hardware hackers have beat the world record for solving a Rubik's cube robotically, completing the task in nearly half the time.

The machine was made using six motors and motor drivers and Playstation Eye cameras - the cameras once used for gaming on the old Playstation 3 console.

"Our solve time of 0.38 seconds includes acquiring the image from the webcam, detecting colours, finding a solution, and actually rotating the faces of the cube", said Di Carlo in a blog post.

The robot uses the min2phase algorithm to solve the puzzle, taking the data received by the cameras and converting it into a sequence of moves for the motors to execute.

In that 0.38 seconds the robot performed 20 individual moves, as Rubik's cubes do not allow two sides to move at the same time.

The previous record-which was held by German Albert Beer's Sub1 Reloaded robot-completed the cube in.637 seconds.

Katz was generous enough to share the components he and his partner used to create the robot that established speed record. "But the tuning process is really time consuming since the debugging needs to be done with the high-speed camera, and the mistakes often break the cube".

"For the time being, Jared an I have both lost interest in playing the tuning game, but we might come back to it eventually and shave off another 100 ms or so".

Its time of 0.637 seconds beat the previous world record of 0.887 seconds, set by an earlier prototype of the same machine. If the speed recorded in this video is any indication, however, it's clear that the Rubik's Contraption will soon take the throne when it comes to cube speed.

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