A Japanese group called Suidobashi Heavy Industry is building a 12-foot tall mech that it intends to offer for sale to the general public, according to the official website for the contraption.
The robotic exoskeleton, Vaudeville (also known as Kuratasu), looks like almost every mech ever inked into manga or anime, with a cockpit that seats a human pilot. Rather than using bipedal locomotion the diesel-powered mech rolls around on four wheels, each attached to the base of the torso by what looks to be independently mounted legs.
Vaudeville apparently requires no advanced piloting training at all. The whole setup is controlled via a smartphone running software called V-SIDO. As far as we can make out users can control the robot either internally via joysticks for arm movement with a Kinect sensor rotating the cockpit by tracking the pilot’s head or remotely via a 3G connection. The website for Vaudeville states “Furthermore, you can control Vaudeville via the mobile 3G Internet access”, which sounds a lot like remote control.
There are no offensive weapons attached to the mech but prospective buyers will be able to customise their large metal toy with a “squirt gun”, “mop and cleaner” or camouflage paint job for sneaking up on errant garden intruders who are not expecting to run into four and a half tons of motorised steel. Vaudeville’s creators expect the mech to be ready for sale later this year but the pricing has not been announced.
Source: PC World Image: Suidobashi Heavy Industry