Robot Hand Can Sense Objects Before Touching Them

Over at Intel's R&D fair, Wired got to play with a robot hand that is able to sense an object it's about to come in contact with before actually touching it. Using electrolocation, the fingertips of the robot hand send out a weak electrical impulse, and approaching objects interfere with that impulse, which allows the hand to form to the object before touching it.

The ultimate goal for Intel researchers is to give robots the sense of pre-touch, which they describe as having a range longer than touch, but shorter than vision (kinda vague, no?). Anyways, the video is worth watching, just to see the claw adjust to objects placed within its proximity. [Wired Science]