The History of Turt...

The History of Turtle Robots  


Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 143
13/09/2018 12:39 am  

Logo is a programming language developed in the 1960s to control educational robots (essentially, tethered buckets on motorized wheels).

After working with kids who wrote the programs, one of the developers decided to add something tangible to the concept, an imaginary "turtle" to metaphorically represent the robot. 

When screen monitors came along a few years later, at first the turtle was just a triangle, later developing into an 8-bit character.

But as cartoon mascots often do, the turtle took on a life of its own, eventually eclipsing the source.

I was also amused to learn the Turtle had been inspired by 2 earlier robots named Elmer and Elsie that date back to the 1940s!

Their inventor Grey Walter was a bit of a quack psychologist who made sensational claims that he'd created a new intelligent life form, and declaring it had recognized itself in a mirror.

The robot tortoises had a rotating photosensor protruding from the top, and they moved towards any bright object. Like a modern Roomba™ they adjusted direction randomly when their shell bumped an obstacle.


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