Are Asimov’s Laws of Robotics still good enough in 2018?

It’s been 76 years since renowned science fiction author Isaac Asimov penned his Laws of Robotics. At the time, they must have seemed future-proof. But just how well do those rules hold up in a world where AI has permeated society so deeply we don’t even see it anymore? Originally published in the short story Runaround, Asimov’s laws are: A robot may not injure a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm. A robot must obey the orders given to it by human beings, except where such orders would conflict with the First Law.…

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Turing Robotics files for bankruptcy in Finland, CEO Syl Chao says company is not going out of business

Turing Robotics, the force behind Turing phone has filed for a bankruptcy in Finland. The company which has started off as a promising brand by launching an ultra-secure smartphone in 2015 with Android 5.1 has soon taken a drastic turn and decided to settle down to Sailfish OS. After delaying the production of the phone, again and again, has finally filed for bankruptcy. The news came out first on February 3 from Finnish newspaper Salon Seudun Sanomat, who was closely following CEO Steve Syl Chao’s progress in Salo, Finland where Turing rented an empty warehouse. The report from Salon Seudun Sanomat states that the creditors filed a claim with the company in 2017 and all of the company’s movable property has been seized. [HTML1] However, CEO Chao has posted an update on the Facebook couple of days ago saying that filing was initiated to temporarily suspend the manufacturing intentions in Salo, and it doesn’t mean that TRI is bankrupt. He further added that he will be posting the latest developments concerning the future of TRI in the coming Further to the initial report, Salon Seudun Sanomat in a fresh news earlier today claims that the Chao is very relentless about TRI not being in debt and not being able to move …
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[Turing to dust] Turing Robotics files for bankruptcy in Finland, CEO keeps promising fairy dust

If all the previous “news” coming out of the company wasn’t deturing enough for you, here’s another chapter in the Turing Robotic Industries saga: it has now filed for bankruptcy in Finland. The company, which started by promising an ultra-secure smartphone in 2015 with Android 5.1 but turned around and decided on Sailfish OS instead, only to keep on delaying production again and again then promise one outrageous upgrade after the other, has, surprisingly, run out of funds. Gasp.

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[Turing to dust] Turing Robotics files for bankruptcy in Finland, CEO keeps promising fairy dust was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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The Verge 2017 tech report card: Artificial intelligence and robotics

Artificial intelligence boomed this year like few other areas in tech, but despite the scientific breakthroughs, glut of funding, and new products rolling out to consumers, the field has problems that can’t be ignored. Some of these, like company-driven hype and sensationalist headlines, need better communication from the media and experts. Others challenges are more nuanced and will take longer to address, such as bias in algorithms and the growing threat of tech firms becoming AI monopolies as they hoover up data and talent.

But first, the good stuff. Artificial intelligence was everywhere in 2017, and although you’re right to be skeptical when you hear this, it’s positive news. Experts compare AI to electricity because it’s a…

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Soft robotics will pick fruit with finesse and save your life too

What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you think of a robot? Bender from Futurama? R2D2? Well yes, you’re not wrong, however, I want to introduce a new breed of robots that might change the way you think about them entirely. ‘Soft robots’, unlike their old, rigid counterparts, are simply robots constructed with soft materials. These transformations have emerged due to recent new fields of science such as biomimetics (looking to nature to solve complex human problems) and morphological computation (replicating physical systems to improve computation efficiency). In other words, systems that basically mimic nature and biology to…

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After 12 Years, Sony’s First Robotics Project Will Be a New Robotic Pet

The New Aibo

Sony recently announced plans to re-enter the world of robotics with the creation of a new development team to help head its first project: a robotic pet dog.

As reported by Nikkei earlier this week, Sony’s decision comes after a twelve year absence from the robotics industry following a series of setbacks that go back as far as the early 2000s. The unexpected growth of the internet, as well as 2008’s global financial crisis, the massive 2011 earthquake that rocked Japan, and the selling of a “vehicle-like robot” (and its team) to Toyota in 2006, were all contributing factors.

Sony is now preparing to re-enter the market with a new robotics project similar to the Aibo robotic pet, which was popular several years ago. In fact, the team behind the new project is made up of several former Aibo engineers. The new robotic pet will move and act like a real dog — albeit one that can also control home appliances and respond to voice commands. Nikkei compares it to the Amazon Echo or the Google Home speaker, which come equipped with artificial intelligence and internet capabilities. It’s currently unclear if this new robotic pet will have the same.

The operating system that will be at the center of the pet’s functionality will also be open to developers who want to add new features. Plans are also underway to give it dog-like behavior, which could make it more popular among children.

From Industrial Robots to House Pets

Interestingly enough, a robot pet was not Sony’s original plan to foray back into the market: Nikkei writes that, in June 2016, President and CEO Kazuo Hirai suggested the company focus on industrial robots or automation, instead of something “capable of forming an emotional bond with customers.” In the relatively short time since, however, it’s become increasingly more difficult to become a key player in the industrial robot marker. Breaking into the home market, on the other hand, is much more achievable.

“By combining its strength in mechanical engineering and AI, which has come a long way since Aibo, the company hopes to elevate its new robot business beyond that of merely controlling household electronics,” explains Nikkei. “It will determine what technology should be pursued as it refines its robotic dog.”

The post After 12 Years, Sony’s First Robotics Project Will Be a New Robotic Pet appeared first on Futurism.


DJI and 3D Robotics team up for business-focused drone tools

For all their hobbyist applications, like photography and videography, drones are still primarily commercial tools. Thus, 3DR's partnership with DJI for the Enterprise Drone Platform. Specifically, the Enterprise Drone Platform will be integrated wit…
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Girl Scouts adds STEM badges for robotics and computer science

The Boy Scouts have been in the headlines recently for all the wrong reasons (they've since distanced themselves from the politics within the president's speech), but the Girl Scouts are doing something right. They've added new STEM badges for roboti…
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Girl Scouts add new STEM badges in robotics, coding, and race car design

Today, the Girl Scouts of the USA introduced 23 new badges in the areas of science, technology, engineering, math, and the outdoors. This is the largest rollout of new badges for the organization in over a decade, aiming to focus on encouraging interest in STEM and environmental conservation from an early age.

The new merit badges include Programming Robots, which requires Scouts to create simple programs that could be run by a robot and understand how machines use sensors, and Race Car Design Challenge, where Scouts have to design cars, tracks, and learn how to carry out “fair tests.” The organization created select badges with contributions from tech-related groups like, SciStarter, and GoldieBlox, and they join existing STEM…

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