Wendy Rush

Weekdays 10:00am - 3:00pm

Dead spiders aren’t something we like to see. I mean, they are usually better than living spiders, but most of us will discard a dead spider as soon as possible. But not the researchers at Rice University. Scientists there have been working on something called “necrobotics”. “Necro” being the prefix meaning relating to a corpse. As in necromancer or necrophobia. And of course “botics” as in robotics. Put them together and what do you get? A dead spider robot. No, I’m not kidding. Smithsonian Magazine recently released an article talking about this latest work in robotic technology. The unique way a spider is built makes it the perfect candidate for this kind of manipulation. What researchers are doing is sticking a syringe needle into the body cavity of a dead spider. When air is injected, the spider’s legs open. When air is extracted, they close. This ability to maneuver the dead spiders’ limbs is being used to create a gripper of sorts. Spiders can lift more than their own body weight. So being able to lower a dead spider into a small space and manipulate the legs this way makes it possible to pick up and lift objects.

Nope. Still not kidding. You can see it here for yourself from Rice University‘s YouTube page.

 

Did you just impulsively brush off your leg like there was a spider on there? You’re not alone. This is Arachnophobia kind of creepy. So what is this technology used for? Besides a back-up plan for when you lose your tweezers and have a splinter. Scientists are hopeful that these new dead spider robots can be used in all kinds of applications. Including collecting specimens from nature without disturbing it unnecessarily. Also possible is using these little guys in assemblies of microelectronics. The possibilities are vast and scientists are excited.

Let’s just hope they don’t have an affinity for making human robots this way.

Wendy Rush, 96.3KKLZ Las Vegas

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9 Reasons Why You Should GetCarded Today

When I was a kid, I remember the library being a place to check out books and do microfiche research. But these days, the library has WAY more to offer, and I guarantee some of it will surprise you!

The Las Vegas Clark County Library District wants you to #GetCarded, as part of the year-round #GetCarded challenge. To “get carded” all you have to do is sign up for a free library card and discover all of the resources the library has to offer. Check out these resources, all available for FREE at our local libraries.

  • 1. Movies & Music Streaming

    You can cancel your Netflix and Spotify accounts now. If you #GetCarded, you’ll have access to a huge catalog of movies, TV shows and music. All available to stream for free with your library card. There are even audiobooks. Bye, Audible!

  • 2. Toy Lending

    At the Las Vegas-Clark County Library District, your children don’t just have a large collection of books at their disposal, they also have toys. The LVCCLD has toy lending as part of their program. A child can check out a toy just like a book, and return it when they are done playing with it. They even have American Girl Dolls!

  • 3. Theaters With Live Performances

    All kinds of performances are happening in the library theaters. Belly Dancing, Chamber Orchestras, Jazz Vocal Ensembles, Drawing Demonstrations, Karaoke nights, and much more. There’s an event calendar you can use to search by topic so you can find exactly what you like. You can look for events that cater to babies, toddlers, adults, even families.

  • 4. Art Galleries With Local Artists

    As part of its commitment to our community, the Las Vegas-Clark County Library District has put a focus on the cultural arts and work of our local, national and international artists. The LVCCLD boasts 14 galleries with 80 shows per year, that offer a diverse range of artwork and programs that visually and conceptually engage the public.

  • 5. Podcasting Studio

    Have you wanted to start a podcast or Voice Over venture but don’t know what equipment to start with? Maybe you just have one project to do that doesn’t warrant spending all that money on a home studio. Well, the library is your answer. Select branches have podcasting equipment available for all your recording needs.

  • 6. DJ Classes

    Yes! DJ Classes. I know, right? Who would have thought a resource like this was available at the library. And for free! Select branches are set up with DJ booths ready to help you hone your craft. Some have even learned how to be a DJ at the library and gone on to make money doing it. Why not you?

  • 7. Music And Production Facilities

    If you’re more interested in the music performance or production side of things, the Las Vegas-Clark County Library District has you covered there too. Select branches have music and production facilities available for you. Record that song you wrote. Or make a commercial for a client. The sky is the limit with the recording equipment the library has to offer. #GetCarded

  • 8. Computer Labs For All Ages

    The library has computers you can use on-site, with a wide range of resources available for you. You can use word-processing software, access the internet, and peruse online resources like newspaper and encyclopedias. All available, free of charge, for anyone who holds a library card.

  • 9. Free Wifi & Hotspots That You Can Take Home

    Here’s another thing that might surprise you. Need Wi-Fi? Maybe you’re between houses or service plans? Whatever the reason you need it, the library has it. You can check out a personal hotspot device just like a book, and return it when you’re done. And it’s free when you #GetCarded. Yes, really.