• Question: Robots are becoming more popular in the world, did you think that in the future we will be using them for jobs like looking after children and driving people around?

    Asked by 09currf1 to Becky, Carrie, Kelly, Robin, Usaid on 13 Mar 2012.
    • Photo: Robin Stafford Allen

      Robin Stafford Allen answered on 10 Mar 2012:

      Robots like R2D2 and C3PO are not, but robot “arms” that do jobs in factories are now very common. There are also wandering “robots” that wander about mowing the lawn at home, and vacuuming the carpet in your living room. These “gadget” robots will become more and more common, but for now they will remain designed for a very limited number of tasks. When robots are sent into space instead of men, you have to plan so carefullly how they will be designed to do the jobs they are likely to need to do. The are not “versatile” as sending men into space, but do need a lot less food and oxygen. regards

    • Photo: Becky Selwyn

      Becky Selwyn answered on 13 Mar 2012:

      I agree with Robin – robots are already widely used, but they don’t look like humans. This is partly because humans are very complex things – even making a robot that can run like a human is very difficult. I think more important uses for robotics are as prosthetics so people who lose arms or legs can have a replacement that works just as well as a real limb.