For a Brighter Robotics Future, It’s Time to Offload Their Brains
Robots already stand in for humans in some of the dullest and most dangerous jobs there are, handling everything from painting cars to drilling rocks on Mars. And if you listen to the hype about the potential of drones and autonomous vehicles, it’s just a matter of time before robots do more. These future autonomous handymen and handywomen will deliver packages, take us to the airport, or handle less romantic tasks like shuffling freight containers and helping bedridden patients.
There’s just one problem: robots are dumb.
Despite all of the science fiction over the past half-century that has foretold the coming of intelligent, autonomous mechanical beings that attain consciousness—Neil Blomkamp’s Chappie being the latest—robots generally remain limited to the most basic of programmed tasks. Even the most advanced and deadliest of unmanned aerial vehicles depend heavily on their network tethers back to human beings. Otherwise, they’re nothing more than glorified model aircrafts on autopilot.