Robots are now commonplace for cleaning carpets (random walk), remote sensing, even swarming. But robot boogie? Fun for some, profound for others. Thanks, MIT!
At the beginning all the robots are waiting for my signal to start. While dancing, they are constantly synchronizing with each other, so if a robot lags behind they will wait for him and the late robot will accelerate. When I remove a robot from the choreography, the others continue dancing. When he stands up again and resumes his dance, he asks the others for a starting position. Then he goes to this position, and starts dancing. Since he starts with a little latency, he will dances a little faster and the others a little slower to synchronize.
The music is played by another robot, and is a part of the synchronization process : the robots are synchronizing with the music too.
This work is the result of the collaboration between the Nonlinear System Laboratory at MIT (http://web.mit.edu/nsl/www/) and Aldebaran Robotics.