I was quite amazed by the notion of a scientist who in an interview claimed that he is working on making a robot like the T1000 model in Terminator 2: Judgment Day (played by Robert Patrick). While such a notion might seem far fetched, however, with the US military already using about 8000 robots and the plan to make an android football team under a set timeline. The age of an A1 (artificial intelligence) based robot might be closer than we might think.
A few months ago there was a news speculation that the Pakistani military has joined the robot soldier race with US, Russia and China, hence becoming one of the few nations working on the production of robot soldiers. It was assumed that such soldiers (if made), will fight entire wars on behalf of the military force. Now I’m not getting carried away by any speculation that modern militaries or mad scientists are making an Arnold Schwarzenegger type T100 in a lab. Instead I will discuss the current advancements in this field and what might the future hold in the wake of the 5 most well known and very real robot programs.
5. Robocup Robots
A very small but significant step in making robots can be seen at the annual RoboCup (Robot Soccer World Cup) competition, which is targeted towards developing autonomous soccer robots with the intention of promoting research and education for the field of robotics. This competition started in 1997 and the next round will be held in Mexico City, in 2012. The aim is to develop a robot team by 2050 which will not only compete but beat a human team. You can check out the RoboCup Adult Final video (given below) for year 2011.
RoboCup Final 2011 Adult Size Final [Video]
Many other well known examples of robots can are included in military projects such as the unmanned Drones. To the military, they are better known as UAVs (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles) or RPAS (Remotely Piloted Aerial Systems). However, they are more commonly recognized as drones. Come to think of it, the only difference between them and a real life Terminator is the ability of self intelligence. But it is not the MQ-1B Predator and the MQ-9 Reaper that is number four on this list. But rather the “EATR”. Robots are already disposing bombs, clearing land mines and assisting scientific research in many parts of the world. A “potentially” haunting example of a more animated form of robot can be seen by the development of a vehicle by the Pentagon, called the EATR (Energetically Autonomous Tactical Robot). This vehicle can surprisingly refuel itself on long journeys by scavenging organic material such as plants. The inventor of this robot vehicle is Dr Robert Finkelstein who has claimed that the vehicle will only scavenge plant life. This for now has fended off any speculation of robots devouring human remains. Unfortunately, I couldn’t find any video from an official sources for this robot and the only one I did was a bit controversial so I couldn’t embed it to avoid controversy. In other words, the only video I found for EATR, was by Alex Jones. Since I believe I would not be able to substantiate the claims made in the video, so I decided not to post it. On a personal note, it does make me uncomfortable to think that a robot can refuel itself by devouring organic material, but maybe I’m wrong.
3. Robonaut 2
Nasa itself launched a human like robot in space to join the space station crew. The robot is called R2 (Robonaut 2) and weighs around 300 pounds. It consists of a head and a torso with two arms and two hands. This robot was the result of NASA and General Motors to develop a robotic assistant that can work alongside humans, whether astronauts in space or workers at GM plants. Robonaut 2 is the first humanoid robot ever to fly in space.
Robonaut 2 Video
2. Russian Army Robot MRK-27-BT
A deadly army robot has been developed by the Russians that can fire three different kinds of weapons at the same time and take out tanks and soldiers in deep trenches or from roof tops. It can also throw smoke grenades and leave the battlefield in after smoking out its enemies. The below video provides more information regarding the creation of this robot and how such projects have been running in various forms (in Russia), since as early as the 1930s.
1. Exoskeleton: Wearable Robot
The US Exoskeleton: Wearable Robots are designed to add heightened strength to the soldiers that wear them and contain enough intelligence to wait for their hosts when they take them off. Scientists have assured that upgraded versions of this exoskeleton will not only increase strength for the soldiers who wear them but go on entire mission on their own.
Since embedding has been disabled by Reuters Channel, you can view this video on YouTube Reuter’s Channel here.
Whether it be in the form of a military scavenger, an exoskeleton, NASA’s astronaut or a football player, the chances of us seeing a cyborg much like the one depicted in flesh and blood in the Terminator franchise, is likely to set foot on Earth. And it might be sooner than we thought.
Sources And Credits:
You can get more information regarding these robots by visiting the list of video channels and links given below.
- TERMINATOR IMAGE: WALLPAPERBASE.COM
- ROBOCUP IMAGE: JRL.CS.UNI-FRANKFURT.DE
- EATR IMAGE: ROBOTSHOP.COM
- R2 IMAGE: UBERGIZMO.COM
- MRK-27-BT Image: HUDONG.COM
- EXOSKELETON ROBOT IMAGE: NEWS.DISCOVERY.COM
- RoboCup 2011 Video: Dutch Robotics YouTube Channel
- Robonaut 2 Video: NASARobonaut’s YouTube Channel
- MRK-27-BT Video: RussiaToday’s YouTube Channel
- Exoskeleton Video: Reuters Video Channel
Disclaimer: The information given in this post has been provided based on data collected from various sources. The writer has attempted to quote as many authentic sources as possible. We at WMLCloud.com do not wish to mislead readers and any errors in providing accurate information (if any) are deeply regretted and we apologize for any such errors in advance.
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