robotic cube / by Gavin Lau

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Cubes aren't usually the go-to shape when creating an object that's meant to move around, but researchers in Switzerland have created one that can do just that — along with a handful of other surprising talents. Called the Cubli, it measures nearly 6 inches on each side and can walk around by continually flipping itself over. Perhaps more impressively, it can also balance on any of its sides or even just a single corner. As the research team from ETH Zurich's Institute for Dynamic Systems and Control demonstrates in a video, the cube can even remain balanced while a surface is raised up at an angle beneath it.