The robotics realm continues to push forward, fuelled by revolutionary advances from companies such as Boston Dynamics and educational institutions such as MIT.
Honda, the Japanese auto maker, has been developing one of the most advanced robots for some time.
ASIMO has been at the forefront of robotic development for 14 years, pushing the bounds of what’s possible within a robotic system. Short for Advanced Step in Innovative Mobility, the robot certainly lives up to its name. ASIMO is one of the most capable and well-known robots, with the goal, according to Honda, to eventually “help those in society who need assistance”.
The project began in the 1980s, when Honda created several different robotic prototypes before ASIMO. The goal of the project was always focused on improving the quality of life for people. For example, ASIMO could be extremely useful in retirement homes and hospitals.
Research continued following the early prototypes, eventually ASIMO. Over the past decade, Honda has focused on creating a humanoid robot capable of a number of different uses.
ASIMO isn’t the only humanoid robot – other contenders are constantly vying to take the top space in terms of capability. The Atlas, being developed by Boston Dynamics, is being designed to intelligently handle object detection, and carry loads to assist soldiers.
Also under development within the US, the NASA Robonaut is currently orbit overhead, conducting tests in a zero-gravity environment. Robots like the Robonaut could eventually handle exploration on other worlds, in place of humans.
While it may seem like robotic integration into society is still contained within the pages and frames of our science fiction worlds, the truth is far more startling. It won’t be long before it’s a common sight to see robots handling multitude of human tasks.