Consumer & Gadgets

Robots with benefits: How sexbots are marketed as companions

When thinking of sexbots, companionship might not be the first word that comes to mind. But sexbot advertising promises more than sex toys. It is also selling emotional intimacy: robots marketed as if they are capable of ...

Engineering

Multimaterial 3-D printing manufactures complex objects, fast

3-D printers are revolutionizing manufacturing by allowing users to create any physical shape they can imagine on-demand. However, most commercial printers are only able to build objects from a single material at a time and ...

Robotics

Could AI's next chapter bring design of feeling machines?

Could robots with feelings be the next step in AI? A research paper discusses an interesting approach to robot design. It is titled "Homeostasis and soft robotics in the design of feeling machines" in Nature Machine Intelligence.

Robotics

Nuclear warheads? This robot can find them

Picture a swarm of autonomous, three-foot rolling robots armed with smart detectors to support nuclear safeguards and verify arms-control agreements. The prototype of such robots, being developed by the U.S. Department of ...

Robotics

Fall madness: MIT's Mini Cheetah robots play soccer

The Nov. 6 video posted by Biomimetics Robotics Lab at Mass Institute of Technology in Killian Court does not need a text narrative and it has none, but that won't stop you thinking along the lines of in-video bystander reactions: ...

Robotics

Flexible yet sturdy robot is designed to 'grow' like a plant

In today's factories and warehouses, it's not uncommon to see robots whizzing about, shuttling items or tools from one station to another. For the most part, robots navigate pretty easily across open layouts. But they have ...

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Robot

Robot is a virtual or mechanical artificial agent. In practice, it is usually an electro-mechanical system which, by its appearance or movements, conveys a sense that it has intent or agency of its own. The word robot can refer to both physical robots and virtual software agents, but the latter are usually referred to as bots. There is no consensus on which machines qualify as robots, but there is general agreement among experts and the public that robots tend to do some or all of the following: move around, operate a mechanical limb, sense and manipulate their environment, and exhibit intelligent behavior, especially behavior which mimics humans or other animals. In South Africa, robot is an informal and commonly used term for a set of traffic lights.

Stories of artificial helpers and companions and attempts to create them have a long history but fully autonomous machines only appeared in the 20th century. The first digitally operated and programmable robot, the Unimate, was installed in 1961 to lift hot pieces of metal from a die casting machine and stack them. Today, commercial and industrial robots are in widespread use performing jobs more cheaply or with greater accuracy and reliability than humans. They are also employed for jobs which are too dirty, dangerous or dull to be suitable for humans. Robots are widely used in manufacturing, assembly and packing, transport, earth and space exploration, surgery, weaponry, laboratory research, and mass production of consumer and industrial goods.

Modern robots are usually used in tightly controlled environments such as on assembly lines because they have difficulty responding to unexpected interference. Because of this, most humans rarely encounter robots. However, domestic robots for cleaning and maintenance are increasingly common in and around homes in developed countries, particularly in Japan. Robots can also be found in the military.

This text uses material from Wikipedia, licensed under CC BY-SA