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There was a failure to recognize the deep problems in AI; for instance, those captured in Blocks World. The people building physical robots learned nothing.
Hollywood likes to imagine robots as mechanical copies of ourselves - which is a terrible idea.
In the end, robots do things that people can do. So there is a cost above which you can hire somebody to do it, and that bounds the opportunity.
People are fascinated by robots because they're machines that can mimic life.
If you don't need umpires out there, and you can put robots out there, then why do we need ballplayers?
I'm Dr. David Hanson, and I build robots with character. And by that, I mean that I develop robots that are characters, but also robots that will eventually come to empathize with you.
At MIT, in Professor Rodney Brooks' lab, I was involved in a project, led by Anita Flynn, to build robots using techniques similar to those used in building silicon chips. We got some silicon micro-machined motors to move a bit, but this didn't lead to an actual product.
It's hard not to love Roomba. Roomba had such an amazing impact on the field. When we launched, we asked people, 'Is it a robot?' and got an overwhelming no - 'robots' have arms and legs; they command data. There was a very strong perception that robots had to look like people.
The ideal vacuum cleaner would be one you never see. It needs to not just be a cool gadget, but a product that cleans your floor correctly. I can imagine people having a cupboard full of robots that only come out when you need them to fulfil a specific purpose.
We're going to have robots in the home, but they're not going to be walking. Legs are complicated, unreliable and costly. Robots are going to look and be designed to meet the function they're supposed to perform. People will still name them and connect with them.
When my daughter was 3, she was eating Cheerios and spilled some on the table. So she swiped them onto the floor. I said, 'Darcy, what are you doing?' She said: 'Don't worry, Daddy, the robot will get it.' I didn't know whether to be horrified or proud. It was this idea that homes take care of themselves and robots are part of that.
Being a sci-fi geek myself and going to movies all my life, I came to the conclusion that there were really two camps of how robots have been designed. It's either the tin man, which is a human with metal skin, or it's an R2D2.
The other one I did was 'I, Robot.' I take apart Isaac Asimov's Robots world.
Robots will someday, or maybe, wake up. They may be really smart. They may be as creative, smart and capable as human beings, and fully conscious, and self discerning with free will.
We're seeing the arrival of conversational robots that can walk in our world. It's a golden age of invention.
In the future, I'm sure there will be a lot more robots in every aspect of life. If you told people in 1985 that in 25 years they would have computers in their kitchen, it would have made no sense to them.
Kids love robots. They're this fanciful, cool thing.
Kids are really inspired to not just apply senses to robots and machines, but to try them on themselves.
According to Jewish legend, only the very wisest and very holiest rabbis had the power to make golems, animated servants of clay. Strictly speaking, the golem is not in the same class with Frankenstein's monster, because the golem is neither alive nor dead. He is, rather, the ancestor of all robots.
Our robots are signing up for online learning. After decades of attempts to program robots to perform complex tasks like flying helicopters or surgical suturing, the new approach is based on observing and recording the motions of human experts as they perform these feats.
There are lots of examples of routine, middle-skilled jobs that involve relatively structured tasks, and those are the jobs that are being eliminated the fastest. Those kinds of jobs are easier for our friends in the artificial intelligence community to design robots to handle them. They could be software robots; they could be physical robots.
The big mathematical challenge for flying robots is making them move in six dimensions: x, y, z, pitch, yaw and roll. We create 3-D obstacle courses in the lab - windows, doors, hula-hoops taped to posts - and ask the robots to fly through. It looks like a Harry Potter Quidditch match.
So, where are the robots? We've been told for 40 years already that they're coming soon. Very soon they'll be doing everything for us. They'll be cooking, cleaning, buying things, shopping, building. But they aren't here. Meanwhile, we have illegal immigrants doing all the work, but we don't have any robots.
Technology is at the forefront of everything these days - communication, work. It's amazing and scary at the same time how robots have evolved, but I find it hard to believe that robots will completely rule the world. Not in my lifetime anyway.
As humans embrace new forms of social media to keep connected with friends and colleagues, our robots are becoming increasingly sociable.
A. P. J. Abdul Kalam
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