[Along with the usual excitement about drone technology and war making, this issue of Automation and Robotics News brings insightful articles about robot job displacement including replacement of entire occupations. There should be no wonder why Egyptian workers with diplomas cannot find jobs . .
.and what does that say about the future in the US? Check out the worker replacement guide below to find out — Lew Rosenbaum]
Automation and Robotics News–Jan 30, 2011
TERROR, MILITARY, POLICING, SURVEILLANCE
Stats Back Al-Qaida Claim of Drone Pain
Spencer Ackerman, January 27, 2011
Is the U.S. drone war in Pakistan putting the squeeze on al-Qaida’s safe havens? It’s not a question that lends itself to easy answers, given the difficulties of reporting from the Federally Administered Tribal Areas where al-Qaida’s top leaders are believed to be. But a new statistical analysis by researchers at Harvard finds that the deadly robots overhead are reaping modest “counterterrorism dividends” — something that al-Qaida itself is complaining about.
Spencer Ackerman January 26, 2011
Police departments around the country are warming up to unmanned spy planes. But don’t expect the Department of Homeland Security to catch drone fever anytime soon. It’s too controversial for an agency already getting hammered for naked scanners and junk-touching.
Return of The ‘Beast of Kandahar’ Stealth Drone
Spencer Ackerman, January 25, 2011
It returns from the skies! Back in 2009, the Air Force confirmed that it had a mysterious stealth drone, the Lockheed RQ-170, flying over Kandahar in Afghanistan — the subject of much online speculation and grainy photography. Now, after something of a lull, the Secret Projects forum has new pics of the drone that Ares aviation ace Bill Sweetman dubbed “The Beast of Kandahar.”
Spencer Ackerman, January 18, 2011
Israel and Russia: once Cold War enemies, now partners-in-drone. Only the Russians want Israel to let the Kremlin in on its most powerful unmanned spy plane.
Fanuc Bets Future on ‘Cranes With Brains,’ Inaba Says
BusinessWeek – Jason Clenfield – Jan 17, 2011
Inaba built Fanuc into an automation empire over three decades, focusing on making the controls that run more than half of the world’s computerized tools. …
Singularity Hub – Aaron Saenz – Jan 20, 2011
Watching these slick industrial robots do their thing is something else. You have to check out the video below and see what I mean. …
POSTED BY: Samuel Bouchard / Wed, January 05, 2011
The manufacturing industry in many countries, facing labor shortages and pressed to become ever more efficient, can certainly use a little help. Or how about a Little Helper?
AGRICULTURE AND FOOD PRODUCTION
Robotspodcast.com, January 14th, 2011
In today’s episode we look at a new market in robotics with huge potential, agriculture. With us, <http://www.harvestautomation.com/About.html>Joe Jones, co-founder of Harvest Automation and father of the Roomba.
January 24, 2011, Martin LaMonica
A waste recycling center uses a series of machines to automatically sort material to enable single-stream recycling for consumers.
Business Wire (press release) – Jan 25, 2011
Teasdale’s implementation of the EZCM accounts payable automation solution was so successful that, within months, order entries and accounts receivable were …
January 03, 2011, James Urquhart
Two companies will play major roles in the cloud computing transformation in the next decade, and who they are might surprise you–as well as how they will do it.
Chicago Sun-Times – Jan 21, 2011
WICHITA FALLS, Texas — A Texas school district here has teamed up with a communications company to allow a homebound student to attend class via robot.
DVICE -Adario Strange – Jan 25, 2011
The MK Robot Project produced the robot to assist waiters with an eye towards total autonomy in the future. Although slow and still in need of human …
msnbc.com – Jan 24, 2011
A gliding robot is set to cruise over a stretch of Australian coast that has been devastated by the recent flooding. The glider will be on a reconnaissance …
InformationWeek – Jan 29, 2011
Japan, which has a large elderly population, has developed a number of robot-based technologies that appear to help slow down the advent of dementia, …
The National – Jan 23, 2011
The “valet” is a mechanical robot, it promises to park or retrieve your car inside 50 seconds – and best of all, parking will be free.
Jack Loftus, 1/16/11
The Roomba has conquered the home. No more vacuuming! Now robots must tackle mail delivery and coffee-making tasks in the office. Enter the coldly-named humanoid bot HRP-4. It doesn’t surf the net. It doesn’t gossip. It simply serves.
Kura, a sushi chain, focuses on efficiency and turning a profit. So much so that they’ve eschewed traditional sushi chefs for sushi robots, a large staff of waiters for conveyor belts and restaurant managers for a control center with video link.
PACKING AND SHIPPING
Vision Systems Design – Jan 6, 2011
Built on the USDA-accepted Adept Quattro s650HS robot, the Adept PAC is the first robotic packaging platform designed from the ground up to address the …
New York Times (blog) – Matthew L. Wald – Jan 12, 2011
Electric Power Research Institute A prototype of the robot that would monitor transmission lines for problems.
USA Today – Rick Hampson – Jan 12, 2011
•Globalization and automation may export or eliminate not only jobs, but entire occupations — ways of life, really. The Labor Department predicts that …
The Robot Economy is Here by Derek Thompson
The Atlantic (blog) – Derek Thompson – Jan 18, 2011
Entrepreneur Marshall Brain–that’s his real name–says robots will become widely available by 2030 and could eventually take nearly half of all jobs in the …
GOVERNMENT AND POLITICS
National Journal – Aliya Sternstein – Jan 13, 2011
Nextgov.com reports that the government can fix the immigration system without legislation, by automating visa processing and by …
TMC Net -Calvin Azuri – Jan 24, 2011
The city of Barcelona invites international solutions providers and research centers who can materialize its automation goals through sensors and other …
01/25/11 WSJ Washington Wire
Members of Congress love their drones, but they want to give all robots their due. So the Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Caucus…
BUSINESS OF AUTOMATION AND ROBOTICS
by Bennett Brumson, Contributing Editor
Posted: 01/11/2011 As the global economy emerges from the Great Recession of 2008-2009, business activity is slowly picking up….
RESEARCH AND NEW DEVELOPMENTS
Space.com – Jan 24, 2011
An unmanned Japanese cargo spaceship is closing in on the International Space Station, on track to link up with the orbiting lab Thursday (Jan. 27).
Seoul To Spend US$89.5 Million On Robot Pilot Projects
Bernama – Jan 26, 2011
SEOUL, Jan 27 (Bernama) — The government will spend 100 billion won (US$89.5 million) on robot-related pilot projects to bolster growth of the cutting edge …
by Bennett Brumson, Contributing Editor
Posted: 01/11/2011 Advancements in safety systems, end-effectors and sensors are rapidly bringing robotics into new applications…
Erico Guizzo / Tue, January 25, 2011
German researchers have built an anthropomorphic robot hand that can endure collisions with hard objects and even strikes from a hammer without breaking into pieces. In designing the new hand system, researchers at the Institute of Robotics and Mechatronics, part of the German Aerospace Center (DLR), focused on robustness. They may have just built the toughest robot hand yet. The DLR hand has the shape and size of a human hand, with five articulated fingers powered by a web of 38 tendons, each connected to an individual motor on the forearm.
Erico Guizzo / Mon, January 24, 2011
In the first “Matrix” movie, there’s a scene where Neo points to a helicopter on a rooftop and asks Trinity, “Can you fly that thing?” Her answer: “Not yet.” Then she gets a “pilot program” uploaded to her brain and they fly away. For us humans, with our non-upgradeable, offline meat brains, the possibility of acquiring new skills by connecting our heads to a computer network is still science fiction. Not so for robots. Several research groups are exploring the idea of robots that rely on cloud-computing infrastructure to access vast amounts of processing power and data. This approach, which some are calling “cloud robotics,” would allow robots to offload compute-intensive tasks like image processing and voice recognition and even download new skills instantly, Matrix-style. Imagine a robot that finds an object that it’s never seen or used before—say, a plastic cup. The robot could simply send an image of the cup to the cloud and receive back the object’s name, a 3-D model, and instructions on how to use it, says James Kuffner, a professor at Carnegie Mellon currently working at Google.
Erico Guizzo / Tue, January 11, 2011
Last year was an incredible time for robotics, and to recap the best robot moments of 2010 we decided to compile a list of our favorite videos. Check out below our selection — going from No. 20 to the No. 1 — and let us know what you think.
Erico Guizzo / Tue, January 11, 2011
Robots made a big appearance at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. There were home robots, robotic pets, humanoids, telepresence systems, and even a little robot to massage people’s backs. Check out the highlights