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[DPRG] ideas

Subject: [DPRG] ideas
From: Randy M. Dumse rmd at newmicros.com
Date: Sun Jul 2 13:47:12 CDT 2006

> From: David P. Anderson
> The original premise (I think) sprang from a quote by
> Colin Angle of iRobot at the Robo Business Conference, which
> resonated with our RBNO discussion the evening previous:
> "We are not waiting on the technology. We are waiting on good
> business models and ideas."

I agree, that was the original premise, and wondering about the
validity of his statement is a matter of great consequence. Not
necessarily that we can pronounce upon it one way or another,
but well worth our consideration.

> That seems to include an implication that we have not
> yet realized the potential of the technology that we
> already have.
> I think that's probably true.

I agree, we have not realized the potential of the technology we
already have.

But that does not mean either that the robots we already have,
have all the technology we already have. Therefore you upgrade
robots and microprocessors which embody the latest "ideas" and
see if the fusion leads to more ideas and technology.

> So, you believe that we _do_ have all the ideas we
> need and it's the technology that's holding things
> up?

False dilemna. Both. Ideas and technology are the same thing,
and in that order. ;)

For instance, I've said before the greatest recent advance in
robotics was the NiMH cell. However, if someone made a new power
source with about 20x the NiMH capacity, my walker would finally
be practical to try for outdoor navigation.

We don't have such a technology (fuel cells being the probable
progenitor) but we have an idea where it might come from.

> To stay with the musical analogy, you suggest we are
> waiting on Cristofori to invent the piano,
> where it seems to me that we are waiting on Mozart
> and Beethoven to show us how to play it.

Excellent example. What's the difference? No Cristofori, no
Mozart, Beethoven. No Mozart, Beethoven, perhaps no memory of

Is not the idea of how to build it and the idea of how to play
it both origined in the same media?

With that, I now see clearly my objection to Colin Angle's
falaciously constructed totology, "We are not waiting on the
technology. We are waiting on technology."


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