Roly-Poly role models for future robots
Sometimes it pays to be spineless. Take the caterpillar--it can squirm and crawl in ways that would make a contortionist green with envy.
One such animal, a green tobacco hornworm, dangles off Barry Trimmer's finger, half of its body squirming and bending in mid-air. What fascinates Trimmer, a Tufts University biology professor, is how caterpillars can move in ways animals with spines and skeletons can't.
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