Perhaps the greatest outrage in modern robotics is the continued non-existence of the robot housekeeper. Is it really so much to ask for a robot that sweeps and mops and brings you pills on platters, like Rosie from The Jetsons? Actually, it kind of is a lot to ask...
Over the next few years, the Pentagon is poised to spend almost $1 billion for a range of robots designed to complement combat troops. Beyond scouting and explosives disposal, these new machines will sniff out hazardous chemicals or other agents, perform complex reconnaissance and even carry a soldier’s gear.
Paul Daugherty, an executive from Accenture who attended the summit, said they addressed concerned about robots replacing humans in the workplace. “The fear that we have is in the short and medium term, there will be displacement as certain jobs are automated by artificial intelligence,” he said. However, the real issue, he said, is not the lack of jobs but the fact that there is a very large skills gap.
Jett the robot, the software, and curriculum were all created by RoboKind, a robotic education company based in downtown Dallas. “We’re trying to capture the students at an early age to generate an interest that they can take with them,” said Scott Murphy, national sales manager for RoboKind. “If you don’t capture a child’s attention by the time they’ve reached the sixth grade, you’ve lost them.
Robots and artificial intelligence are already taking over jobs from people, so many schools are teaching cybersecurity, programming and robotics to provide students with employable 21st century skills.
Engineers are reportedly working on Vesta prototypes with advanced computer vision similar to that in self-driving cars. The robots scan the environment and maneuver around obstacles to navigate your home. Sources who spoke to Bloomberg suggest the robot might be able to follow you around and act as a mobile Alexa-powered speaker, but that hardly seems like a sufficient reason to have a robot.
South Korea, Germany, and Japan are most prepared for the coming wave of automation, according to a new report by The Economist. The U.S., on the other hand, ranks ninth out of 25 countries. And the most-at-risk countries? Mexico, Vietnam, and Indonesia.
Without any feedback it can be difficult to pick up objects. The mimicEducationalRobots (a division of Robomotive Laboratories LLC) offers the feedback needed to feel that you have something in your hand. This makes it easier to accomplish tasks, and for young students to literally gets hands-on with robotics. The idea is to get kids interested in robotics to where they want to be able to tinker with the arm, and hopefully, start to learn how to program it.
“Preparing today’s youth to be our future STEM leaders is just one of the many goals of the Robotics Education & Competition Foundation,” said Dan Mantz, CEO of the REC Foundation. “The VEX Robotics World Championship is really all about celebrating these brilliant students and their bright futures.”
The ninth annual National Robotics Week kicks off April 7 with STEM-focused events happening across all corners of the US. Established by Congress and iRobot in 2010, National Robotics Week is designed to raise awareness about the importance of STEM education (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math), and how these subjects play a role in shaping the future of education, industry and the U.S. economy.