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Robotic cubes reunite on their own

Artificial intelligence helps them reassemble to form bigger bots

Information Sciences Institute

We'll be dating ourselves again by mentioning this, but this item is kind of a 21st century version of those black and white scotty dog magnets we remember from our childhood. Only the "SuperBot" modules can think for themselves and find each other on their own.

Gadget Lab says these interlinking robotic cubes use artificial intelligence to "flip and stagger their way back together when parted" (see the YouTube clip below). Once reassembled, they can take a caterpillar-like form and continue on their merry way, or they can be combined to form a new kind of robot altogether.

The SuperBot, the brainchild of scientists at the University of Southern California, is part of a research trend that will eventually help robots do things like "heal" themselves when damaged. Kind of like salamanders that regrow their tails after some mean kid pulls them off. (More childhood memories. Good times.)