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[DPRG] DARPA Grand Challenge

Subject: [DPRG] DARPA Grand Challenge
From: Rick Bickle rbickle at intconsys.com
Date: Wed Dec 18 16:22:06 CST 2013

I totally agree with you Dave. I've always thoght it's silly to make robots
the look and function like humans. Did we make cars that look like horses?
No, we made cars that have the most efficient shape and characteristics to
be a mixture of functional and artistic.

For another point, when the development of a new technology is in its
infancy, it seems rediculous to try and tackle the most complex problem with
it right away. The best you will be able to do will be a poor imitation.


-----Original Message-----
From: dprglist-bounces at dprg.org [mailto:dprglist-bounces at dprg.org] On Behalf
Of David P. Anderson
Sent: Tuesday, December 17, 2013 10:17 AM
To: dprglist at dprg.org
Subject: [DPRG] DARPA Grand Challenge

Does anyone else think this is silly?   I'm not a fan of humanoid 
robots, other than as entertainment, which is perhaps what this is supposed
to be.  I don't think a human body is useful for robotics without a human
brain to control it.  And we aren't there and won't be there for a long
time, maybe never.


As we've discussed before, why have a humanoid robot open the door? Why not
just have the door open itself?  (see your  local grocery store).  
Why have a humanoid robot drive the car?  Isn't it easier just to have 
the car drive itself?  (See Google, Honda, etc).   I don't see this as 
the future of robotics.  Maybe the future of Hollywood and trade shows.  
I don't see these machines ever being as useful as, say,  a Roomba.

Steve, remember how the Aibo was going to replace real dogs for old people
so they didn't have to feed and cleanup after them, but they would otherwise
have all the joy and affection of a real puppy dog? 
Didn't happen.   I wonder why?   These robots will probably end up in a 
museum somewhere, where they will never be turned on to show that they
actually don't work and can't do anything, and folks will imagine, based on
their humanoid appearance, all the cool things they must have been able to

Here's a good rule I've found useful for myself:  be suspicious of any robot
article who's webpage does not include any video.  Without it, outrageous
claims are easy to make,  and hard to verify. Especially by 
journalists caught up in the excitement.   Just saying.


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