Portrait of Claude Elwood Shannon, courtesy of Fan Chung Graham.
Shannon also designed small autonomous mechatronic rodents, pioneering the design of such devices years before similar research- and consumer-oriented application came to fruition. It is also a very early attempt at machine learning, based on cybernetic principles in fashion at the time.
 more on the science of juggling can be found here and here. And an overview on a German museum exhibit a few years back called Codes and Clowns.
 there are more stories about Shannon's mechanical rats roaming the halls of Bell Labs in the recently published book "The Idea Factory".
 quite an impressive overview of some really obscure technology. My favorite is the mechanical animal compendium.