Tuesday, December 27, 2005

The Age of Robotics

27 December 2005

I think most of us have not yet realized that the age of robotics is here.

Probably we are all aware that we can now program a robotic vacuum cleaner to clean our floor (we have three at this point!). The role of the vacuum cleaner in early robotics was anticipated by Robert Heinlein in his classic novel, The Door into Summer.

However, have you stopped to consider that the car you are presently driving may be a robot? We now have cars that automatically regulate temperature, speed, braking, loss of traction, communication with the outside world, navigation, and a variety of other electronically and cybernetically controlled functions.

We are there. The robots are here.

So what do we want robots to do?

As I have an ankle injury, almost 2 years old, my first thought is that I want a robot that will stretch, bend, massage and otherwise work my ankles to increase their flexibility and strength, and thus help me run more safely and effectively down the road as a jogger. (I promise I won't stop doing my physiotherapy exercises!)

What are your robotic ideas?

Please let me know!

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