The Future Of Adult By Darren Roberts
The place where sex and technology blend together perfectly.

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Soft robotics is a quickly emerging field that takes a lot of inspiration from marine creatures like squids and starfish. A light-controlled hydrogel was recently developed that could be used for control of these new robotic devices, but now researchers at North Carolina State University are taking the development of soft robotic devices to a new level with electrically-charged hydrogels.

The “ionoprinting” technique, as the team has dubbed it, uses a copper electrode to inject positively-charged copper ions into a hydrogel material (a highly absorbent polymer material that is nearly 99.9 percent water). The copper ions bond with negatively charged ions n the hydrogel’s polymer network, creating a more robust and mechanically stiffer structure.

Applying an electrical current then causes the hydrogel to flex. Although electrical fields have been used to actuate hydrogel materials before, this is the first time that electromechanically active electrodes have been used to drive the motion. Also, this is the first time that the binding of ions has been used to create a more rigid hydrogel network in this way.

As well as being able to fold hydrogels significant distances within seconds, the technology allows the application of modest voltages to locally tune the mechanical properties of hydrogels to create physically-reinforcing exoskeletons. The copper ions can be injected into specific sections of the hydrogel material for more precise movement, with the resulting pattern of ions stable in water for a period of months. The more ions that are injected, the greater the hydrogel’s bending capabilities.

“We are currently planning to use this technique to develop motile, biologically compatible microdevices,” says Dr. Orlin Velev, INVISTA Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at NC State.

This gives the technique potential in not only soft robotics, but also many other biomedical applications. Artificial muscles, enviro-intelligent sensors, actuators, biomimetic microbots, micropatterned thin films, cell scaffolds and drug-delivery are just some of the other potential applications for the technology according to the researchers.

The team’s paper is published in the journal Nature Communications.

The video below shows the ionoprinting process and hydrogels in action.

Source: North Carolina State University

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Cover of Time Magazine’s Rise of the Robots

Now available on newsstands (yes some do still exist), is the Time Magazine special issue of “Rise of the Robots”. From Androids to Unimates, this issue has all the species covered. The technology advancements made in this sector are staggering and for us that embrace the thought of robots adding to a better quality of life, the progress is more than hopeful. While they don’t mention the use of robotics to aid in sexual pleasure, it doesn’t take a PHD in Robotics Engineering to see how this all plays out.

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So Roxxxy isn’t the most attractive robot I have seen, however she is a clear sign that the progress of sexual robotic technology is striving ahead. TrueCompanion is the company that engineered and sells Roxy (and Rocky), however their website seems to lack the pizzazz of what I would expect from a state-of-the-art technology company.

Here is a link to a video that was shot at the 2010 AEE show. If for nothing more than to set a base line for where and when it all began, this is where this industry is heading.

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Peter Acworth

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I met Peter back in 1999 soon after he had relocated from New York to San Francisco. At that time he was running a company by the name of Cybernet Entertainment, which operated just a few adult bondage sites: Fucking Machines and Hogtied. He greeted me in a room of programmers, artists, technicians, and editors. There were blue and yellow wires hanging from the celling and servers stacked on desks. Empty cans of Red Bull filled the wire mesh trashcans and the dull humming sound of computers filled the large brick room. Their offices on Mission Street showed all the signs of your typical Silicon Valley start up, with the exception of the bondage chains and floggers hanging from the server rack. We met in a small corner office, which he shared with a co-worker, and conducted our meeting behind a portable desk that he had unfolded just for the occasion.

Over a double-shot of espresso, he shared with me his believes on business and his vision for creating an environment based on teamwork, creativity, and efficiency. Today that vision has turned to reality and Kink.com has become one of the largest and most well respected adult companies in the world. Peter has not only been an inspiration to myself, but to the adult industry as a whole. I was both honored and humbled to interview Peter for the book The Unsexpected Story and hope you have a chance to read more about this influencial individual. There was a great story done on Peter Acworth by The New York Times Magazine titled A Disciplined Business. 

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