TV News LIES

Tuesday, Sep 16th

Last update04:57:11 AM GMT

You are here News Economy How robots are eating the last of America’s—and the world’s—traditional manufacturing jobs

How robots are eating the last of America’s—and the world’s—traditional manufacturing jobs

E-mail Print PDF

Baxter, the robotBaxter, the affordable, humanoid industrial robot recently unveiled by Rethink Robotics, is so easy to program that I once did it one-handed and drunk. We were at a party at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and he was standing in the corner, looking lonely. No, really—Baxter has expressive eyes projected on a touchscreen where you’d expect it to have a face, virtually guaranteeing that you’ll anthropomorphize it.

Drink in hand, I walked over and, with only the vaguest sense of how to get it to respond to my touch, grabbed it by the wrist. I guided its “hand” over to a box full of small objects. Its caliper-like fingers closed on a widget. Then I moved its hand, which offered almost no resistance at all, to another position on the table. It dropped the object.

After that, it dutifully repeated the procedure I had taught it, again and again, emptying the box. In a display of the sort of capabilities that used to be almost impossible in robotics but are now routine, its machine vision allowed it to cope with the differences in position and shape of each of the widgets. Baxter was untroubled by the poor lighting, loud music or my clumsiness.

In less time than it takes to update my calendar, I had, in essence, trained Baxter to pack a box for shipping, or to transfer goods from one conveyor belt to another—two tasks that are common in manufacturing and distribution centers.

More...


Most Recent Related Stories...


US wealth gap putting the squeeze on state revenue

income inequalityIncome inequality is taking a toll on state governments.The widening gap between the wealthiest Americans and...

Morgan Stanley to pay $95 million in U.S. mortgage-debt settlement

Morgan stanleyMorgan Stanley (MS.N) has agreed to pay $95 million to resolve a lawsuit accusing the Wall...

Seniors Forced Into Poverty As Education Department Demands Payment

student loan debtThe Education Department is demanding so much money from seniors with defaulted student loans that it's...

The Cyber-Terror Bank Bailout: They're Already Talking About It, and You May Be on the Hook

Mary GalliganBankers and U.S. officials have warned that cyber-terrorists will try to wreck the financial system’s computer...
 
America's # 1 Enemy
Tee Shirt
& Help Support TvNewsLIES.org!
TVNL Tee Shirt
 
TVNL TOTE BAG
Conserve our Planet
& Help Support TvNewsLIES.org!
 
Get your 9/11 & Media
Deception Dollars
& Help Support TvNewsLIES.org!
 
The Loaded Deck
The First & the Best!
The Media & Bush Admin Exposed!