Anyone in the city or suburbs who has a big lawn knows the tedium of mowing it weekly. Wouldn't it be nice if you were allowed to have livestock in the yard to keep the grass under control? Well, yes and no there's always the dung to deal with. Visiting Assistant Professor at Carnegie Mellon's School of Art, Osman Khan, may have an answer to that dilemma with his Mower, a robotic sheep that will be on the lawn of Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens from July 11-28. Khan's Mower is one of the BigBots created for Robot 250. He said he created it, with reference to Philip K. Dick's Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? and allusions to green / sustainable practices of using sheep to maintain lawns in, for example, city parks in Curtiba, Brazil. The project will be to place a robotic sheep on a lawn… that will autonomously roam the lawn, trimming it as it goes. The mouth of the sheep will contain a grass-mowing device, and the head of the sheep will be outfitted with navigational and obstacle avoidance sensors. As well, the sheep will have quadrupedal walking mechanics, Khan said.

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I did the Mechanical, electronic and software design for this project.