Automation Nation: The 10 Coolest Innovations In Robotics

robotic innovations

The robots are coming for all of us, for better or for worse. Robots are projected to take over one-third of all jobs in the U.S. by 2030. It’s not necessarily a bad thing, as long as society moves to subsidize and transform the workforce.

Robotic innovations have improved the lives of many, not just manufacturing spaces. Robot AI has gotten so much better over the years that we get to see them learn. Look no further than our virtual assistant robots.

You tell Alexa or Siri what you want and they listen. They build a personality profile and start recommending things. Video doorbells learn faces and recognize dangers, rather than just sounding the alarm when disturbed.

It’s robots like these that make our lives better and get us excited for the future. Here are ten of the latest robotics to get your imagination going:

1. Google Duplex

Google has been very busy on the robotics front for the past few years, buying up multiple robotics companies. The Google Home assistant is impressive enough, now they’re looking to take robots to the next level with functional personalities.

A robot with a personality that sounds like its alive. It can display complex behaviors and speech patterns not seen in a robot before.

2. Sony Aibo

This robotic dog has a long history of robotic innovations. Although, the concept of a robotic pet dog seems silly at face-value. The public sees a cute toy, but the engineers and robotics teams have used it as a measure of progress.

This latest addition is smarter than ever with Aibo being able to detect emotions. It responds to both negative and positive feedback and is touch-sensitive. You can pet this plastic creation and Aibo will respond just like a pup would with its 22 axes of movement.

Aibo makes for a great companion for those living alone, i.e. the elderly, who can’t own a real dog.

3. UR3 Arm

The latest development in the robotic manufacturing world by Universal Robots. This nimble arm is capable of building and doing its own repairs along with its assigned tasks. This arm is used to create parts, paint, glue, and solder things together.

Robotic arm assemblies are some of the most precise areas of robotics. Robots that can cut precise measurements with just the flow of water may one day become our paramedics and doctors, acting autonomously like UR3 Arm.

4. The Somnox

Now for something weird in the robot world. Robotics isn’t just for doing labor tasks, they can fill the void in our emotional lives, too. The Somnox is a robotic body pillow of sorts. It mimics the rhythmic motions of breathing.

It may sound creepy at first, but this robotic innovation serves as an important comfort tool. The body natural tries to sync with this breathing pillow, which can help lull the user to sleep.

5. Saul Robot

Better Call Saul with this latest medical breakthrough. Saul is a robot that helps eradicate deadly viruses, like Ebola and create safe zones. Saul Robot is able to kill all viruses in rooms by emitting ultraviolet radiation at high concentrations.

This method is much safer, more effective, and efficient than traditional chemical scrubbing by humans.

6. Stanford Snake Robot

Snake robots aren’t really a new concept, but this one actually has a use beyond mimicking snake aesthetics. Stanford University has developed a robot that can slither between gaps, both vertically and horizontally. It’s actually more of a worm than a snack in the way that it stretches and extends.

This robot will serve as the prototype for rescue operations where water and rations can be delivered to victims of an earthquake or cave collapse. This robotic tube is much smarter and flexible than rudimentary manual threadings of tubes.

7. Asus Zenbo

The popular laptop brand has a creative take on the virtual assistant. The Zenbo is supposed to be the affordable robot assistant that can help with tasks and household security. Zenbo can keep track of appointments, fitness schedules, and serve as a hub for all your smart home needs.

8. The Aeolus Robot

If you’re looking for a house robot that is a bit more domesticated, the Aeolus is made to serve. Rather than just being a basic virtual assistant, Aeolus does chores. This robot is equipped with an articulating arm that can pick stuff up off the floor, mop, and move stuff.

It doesn’t need to be told what to do, as this impressive robot independently surveys its surroundings, finding things to help out. It can tell the difference between dog toys and shoes, so it won’t just collect stuff for no reason. Unlike the basic robot vacuums out now, Aeolus doesn’t need a perfect floor layout to do a good job.

This is an exciting look into the future, finally resembling The Jetsons’ living room.

9. Paro

Taking a note from the comforting function of the “breathing pillow” robot, Paro is another therapeutic innovation. This time we have a cute and recognizable body of a seal. This little guy is great for children and adults who need a full-time companion while sick or bed-bound.

It can motivate and massage patients by reacting to tactile feedback, patient posture, voice, and even temperature.

10. Buddy

This last robot may seem just like another smart home assistant, but it’s a lot more social than that. Buddy focuses on family interactions, rather than task scheduling. It will speak and listen like another family member. Buddy will spark up a conversation if it detects someone is sad or angry. This robot is a look into the future of robot nannies.

Future Robotic Innovations

The field of robotic innovations has expanded greatly in the last few years. Robots have moved into more autonomous realms that don’t require artificial environments or heavy hand-holding. Robots that can learn and teach new things will start forming stronger bonds with their human masters.

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