As dynamic robot behaviors become more capable and well understood, there becomes a need for a wide variety of equally capable and understood transitions between these behaviors. For legged robots, we introduce a new formalism for understanding behavioral components as a self-manipulation, and then build up a hybrid system that defines topologically the space of dynamic transitions as a cellular complex. Our primary motivation is not to facilitate numerical simulation but rather to promote design insight -- behavior design, controller design, and platform design.
Next generation wearable robots will use soft materials such as textiles and elastomers to provide a more conformal, unobtrusive and compliant means to interface to the human body. These robots will augment the capabilities of healthy individuals (e.g. improved walking efficiency, increased grip strength) in addition to assisting patients who suffer from physical or neurological disorders. This talk will focus on two different projects that demonstrate the design, fabrication and control principles required to realize these systems.