this is just a really cool way of makking a gripper. i belive it pushes the balloon around the object the puts preasure on the coffe so it jams around it. i think sort of
I saw this (probaby on HackADay) a while back and found it most interesting. I'm considering using it on my robot-forever-in-planning if only because I'd need more servos than I care to use if I want to have some sort of end effector.
Sparkfun has a tutorial using their vacuum pump.
Simple and useful as it is, I still think claws do a better job of saying "robot."
damn thats kewl :D