Technology And Robotics In The United States Essay

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Is the United States a serious contender in global advances in robotics? Are they putting up enough of an effort (resources, funds, time) to compete with what is being accomplished in other countries, most obviously, Japan? The answer seems obvious; but is it really as cut and dry as it seems? It is simple to see that robotics are not exactly a hot topic in popular culture, and that advances in them are hardly seen by the masses: people that do not watch TED talks, people that do not write or read anything to do with a robot if it is not a frivolous thing that will ultimately serve only to humour them, but that does not mean that advances aren’t happening. Did you know that researchers at UC Berkley have already created cyborg beetles (Singer)? That the US sent four different types of search and rescue robots to Japan after the disaster in March 2011 (Linendoll)? It is clear that we are advancing when you know where to look. But then again, can what we have really compare? Does our advancing aid at all, or is it futile, and is it possible that we are running a race that we have no chance of winning? Walking, adult-sized self-contained robots are commonplace in robotics labs in Japan and Korea, but there’re only two in the entire United States, since July 2010. One is called Jules, and was built by Hanson Robotics (Brockway), and the other COG, which is in MIT’s research lab (Yang B3). In 1986, ASIMO, Japan’s first humanoid robot, was completed. It is now in it’s 20th Generation. Korea has it’s own ASIMO, called Jun-Hoh-Oh. In 2005, Korean funding for robotics was at 80 million USD. America’s was 10 million USD. (Ward) It has to do with US pragmatism; if we have a problem, let’s design the cheapest, simplest solution. There is no room for exploring, or research as there is in the Asian countries. There is only getting from point a to point b. This pragmatism can

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