New advances in robotics and artificial intelligence means robots could not only replace humans in manufacturing, but also in battle against a deadly enemy or in the depths of outer space.
New internet-based software out of the University of Texas would allow a human to control multiple robots at one time, which is a good thing because they will probably outnumber people one day.
The Cloud-based Advanced Robotics Laboratory (CARL) would enable a user to control robots via the web. That means one day you could control the Terminator with your cell phone, according to Dr. Luis Sentis from the University of Texas.
“By integrating humanoid robots with the cloud, they are accessible from any Internet-connected device.”
The research submitted for publication this week, details how human controllers would use the web to control both humanoid robots and industrial bots, according to the Daily Mail.
“Humanoid robots will likely one day outnumber humans which means each person may need to handle multiple humanoid robots.”
The technology could also be used to control another set of robots being designed by a team of researchers in South Korea that is capable of assembling not only itself, but also other machines like it, even a robot army.
The scientists at the Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology in South Korea (UNIST), used “Janus colloid” particles, with positive and negative charges to make spheres that form into patterns. The idea is similar to a swarm of ants that can act as a single unit.
Meanwhile, the European Space Agency (ESA) is busy trying to replace astronauts with robots that could operate in the ravages of deep space where the environment might be too dangerous for humans.
ESA Astronaut Roberto Vittori’s white paper details how robots will replace humans in space and it’s already happening. Russia is currently testing two military robot prototypes it plans to launch into space that could be used to conduct repairs on vital satellites and space stations. NASA is following suit with its Robonaut, as is the Chinese space agency with their “Iron Man” robot, which closely resembles the Marvel superhero, according to the Daily Mail.
“Space robotics is central to the future of space exploration. The importance of this area of science cannot be understated.”
Earlier this month, two researchers from Cal-Tech worked with NASA to design a robot that could build a telescope in space while its in orbit around the Earth, according to the Daily Mail.
“This will lead to the development of robotic explorers and assistants that can carry out such complex tasks that they could tangibly replace humans in space or assist astronauts on a mission.”
Space isn’t the only frontier robots are exploring, however; new advances in technology mean they could be taking over for humans on the battlefield as well.
The Pentagon showed off its newest unmanned battleship earlier this year when it tested the “Sea Hunter,” a self-driving, 132-foot vessel capable of traveling 10,000 nautical miles to hunt for enemy submarines.
Russia has its own military force of robots as well; the Uran-9 is a combat ground vehicle, or tank, that comes armed with a 30mm cannon and missiles and is designed to act as both fire platform and scout.
The Israeli aerospace industry just announced its own entry into the robot battle tank arena with the RoBattle, which can be used on a variety of missions because of its modular design.
Customers who have enough cash to buy the autonomous combat tanks can equip the machine for a variety of missions including acting as a decoy, advance guard, or long range scout.
The versatile machine can also crouch down 23-inches in ambush mode or raise its armored body four feet in the air to tackle obstacles in its path, according to the Daily Mail.
“RoBattle is one of the most advanced combat, maneuvering, ground robotics in the market.”
There have also been advances in robot technology for farming, herding, manufacturing, and medicine, not to mention self-driving cars and self-landing robotic space rockets.
There are many people who fear the rise of the machines, but robots are here to stay and could become an important part of everyday life.
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