A brief history of walking machines
The earliest walking machines were mechanical toys. (The history of automata and mechanical toys is outside the scope of this book.) Their legs were driven by cranks or cams from a source of rotary power, usually clockwork, and executed a fixed cycle. An interesting variant is the walking toy which is not internally powered but can walk down a slight slope under gravity power, the legs being independently pivoted and not driven by cranks. This principle has been adopted in some prosthetic walking aids. It may have some lessons for the design of power-economical robots.
KeywordsBipedal Walking Servo Valve Legged Locomotion Walking Machine Legged Vehicle
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