The Future Of Robotics In The Next 10 Years

The Future Of Robotics In The Next 10 Years

In the coming decade, robots will become just as common as cell phones.
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The robotics we’ve all seen in the movies and cartoons of the 1960s and 1970s will become the reality of the 2020s. A profound level of investment in robotics is happening right now that is facilitating advances in big data, network technologies, and artificial intelligence. In the coming decade, there will be substantial breakthroughs in robotics that will rapidly improve human well-being and literally change the human experience. Ultimately, some countries will adopt the new robotic reality while others will flounder far behind unless cultural attitudes change.

Japan, China, the United States, South Korea, and Germany are five counties that have already established themselves as leading robot societies, because their public and private sectors have spent loads of money in funding tech companies that will bring us our robotic future. For instance, Google bought Boston Dynamics, a leading robotics design company with Pentagon contracts, for an undisclosed amount back in 2013. Google also bought DeepMind, and artificial intelligence company that was started by Demis Hassabiss, who was known as the 2nd highest-ranked chess player in the world at the age of 14. Even the Obama Administration has gotten in on the action by launching the National Robotics Initiative in 2011 to stimulate development of robots for industrial automation, elder assistance, and of course -- military applications. Germany and France have initiated similar programs and invested $126.9 million big ones thus far for its robotic-centric future. Although these capitalist economies see big profits in their balance sheets because they expect the market for consumer robots to make $390 billion by 2017 and industrial robots to reach $40 billion in 2020, enthusiasts like myself believe robotics will do more than strengthen corporate balance sheets.

Nanobots, still in their developmental infancy, promise a future in which autonomous machines far smaller than a grain of sand can diagnose and treat human diseases at the cellular level. A microscopic swarm of robots would be injected into the bloodstream that are programmed to eradicate cancer cells or repair organic tissue. Although this sounds like stuff from science fiction, it’s closer to reality that you might think. Similarly, labor shortages will hit service-industry jobs like eldercare with ferocity and will be exacerbated because caretakers have a high job turnover rate due to low pay and high rates of work-related injury from lifting patients. Thus, robotics present a pragmatic solution that promises to fill the need that the eldercare industry will face in the coming decade. Toyota has built a nursing aide named Robina (modeled after the robot housekeeper in "The Jetsons") that can communicate using words and gestures and whose purpose is to care for Japan’s geriatric population. Robina has a brother, Humanoid, that can do the dishes, take care of your parents when they’re sick, and even provide impromptu entertainment by playing the trumpet or violin. And of course, we are all familiar with Honda’s ASIMO, a fully functional humanoid that looks like a four-foot-tall astronaut stuck on Earth and is sophisticated enough to interpret human emotions, movements, and conversations. ASIMO can even shake hands, follow voice commands, and answer questions correctly with a nod or by voice. For elderly patients, ASIMO and future robotics like it can fulfill a range of tasks, from helping a patient get out of bed to holding a conversation.

There are a couple of reasons that robotics will become ubiquitous and central to our lives in the coming decade: the advancement of what developers call belief space and the development of cloud robotics. First of all, Belief Space refers to a mathematical framework that allows us to model a given environment statistically and develop probabilistic outcomes. Essentially, it allows a robot to interact with its surroundings intelligently because it would know the outcomes of its actions and be fully situationally aware (for example, a robot walking through a crowd and avoiding dangerous obstacles like potholes or incoming traffic). Until recently, it was difficult to program a robot for all the possible outcomes that it would encounter in the real world because of the sheer amount of computing power it would require. This leads me to the second advancement, cloud robotics¸ which allows a robot to tap into the cloud and access vast troves of data and shared experiences to enhance the understanding of its own belief space. Before, robots were standalone pieces of electronics with capabilities that were limited to the hardware and software inside the unit. But by becoming networked devices, robots can now incorporate the experiences of every other robot of their kind and “learn” at an accelerating rate. It would be fantastic and so cool if we as people could tap into a worldwide neural network and draw from not just our own limited experiences and expertise, but from that of billions of other people as well.

Alas, robots are the sole carriers of this capability, but many speculate that our robotic future may radically change human life even more than simply servicing our human needs. One view is that it is inevitable robots will surpass humanity and become a species of their own; another is that they can’t possibility compete with human ingenuity; and a third option is that human and machine will become a cohesive unit. Within the robotics community, the future of technology is wrapped up in the concept of the singularity, the theoretical point in time when artificial intelligence will match or surpass human intelligence. If this event in time occurs, it’s unclear what the relationship between robots and humans will become; it would either enhance the human experience or unleash a dystopian future where people become inferior and subservient to machines. Yay.

In the end, the dissemination of robotics will in part depend on a country’s culture, meaning how readily people will accept robots in their lives. For whatever reason, the western world has a deeply rooted fear of robotics. The notion of humanity creating things they cannot control is substantial in western literature and pop culture. Prometheus was condemned to an eternity of punishment for giving fire to humans. Mary Shelley’s "Frankenstein" focuses around a physician whose grotesque creation wreaks havoc and ultimately leads to its creator’s death. "The Terminator" franchise centers around a dystopian future where robots have exterminated most of humanity and its few survivors struggle to survive and alter the course of their fate. These are just a few of the numerous examples where western culture has demonstrated how afraid they are of the impending robotic future. Even though many of North America’s private companies are investing heavily in robotics, the attitude of western consumers means that capitalists will look eastward to sell their robotic-centered products.

Eastern cultures world have shown a more positive stance concerning robots. The ancient Shinto religion, practiced by 80 percent of Japanese people, includes belief in animism, which holds that both objects and human beings have spirits. As a result, Japanese culture tends to be more accepting of robot companions than is western culture, which views robots as soulless machines. In a culture where the inanimate can be considered to be just as alive as the animate, robots can be seen as members of society rather than as mere tools or as threats. The cultural dynamic in Japan is representative of the culture through much of East Asia, enabling the Asian robotics industry to speed ahead, unencumbered by cultural baggage. To me, this means that we will get our first glimpse of a world full of robots in East Asia rather than in any western country. Regardless, I’m excited about our robotics future, and I’m confident that cultural attitudes in the west will slowly change to catch up with eastern societies.

Cover Image Credit: Telegraph

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2018 Black Panther Review

A Movie Far Beyond It's Time
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Author's Note: I saw Black Panther the day the movie came out and I wanted to share my thought on what I thought. There will be spoilers so please read accordingly. Please let me know what you think and enjoy!

My thoughts before I saw the movie:

Now as someone who grew up with three brothers and who's dad sells comic books as a hobby I have certainly read my fair share of comics. The amount of single issue comics and graphic novels I own is quite overwhelming. Despite that I have read very little of the Black Panther comics and went into the movie with a neutral but upbeat attitude. I decided to see the movie on a whim because everyone was talking about how great the film was. And let me tell you they were right!

The Cast and Characters:

Before seeing this movie I had never seen a single one of the cast members in anything else except Martin Freeman and Michael B Jordan. But my golly I will never forget any of them! The energy and emotion each of them put into this film is beyond incredible. Every single one of them is not only unique in design and character but believable! They each have their own struggles and goals but overcome and achieve them together! But by far my favorite character was Shuri. She is T'challa's sister but by no means is she forgettable. A lot of people have discussed the incredible femininity and female representation in this film and while there are many wonderful other female characters in this film she's my favorite. She is young and doesn't like her cultures traditions but is an absolutely genius. She does everything from invent her brothers suit to help stabilize the vibranium in Wakanda's mine. I love her spirit and willingness to fight when necessary.

The Villain:

The saying goes that no good movie is complete without a sympathetic villain and Black Panther is no exception. Michael B Jordan plays Erik Killmonger who happens to be T'challa's unknown cousin. Erik has grown up outside of Wakanda and therefore knows the harsh realities of growing up as a African American. He wants to become king of Wakanda so he can show the world who's really in control. I honestly felt so hard for him as a character. He grew up with nothing while T'challa had everything. Erik's views and life are sad relatable to many people today. What made it even worse is that he is only a villain due to circumstance. His problems are real and his cause is truly one worth fighting for. All he wants is the equality of his people. The only reason he becomes a villain is that he has no other choice. He figures out that he has to do what he has done his entire life, fight for what he wants. Bottom line he is a amazing character and if you don't care for him by the end of the movie I will be shocked.

The Plot:

The main story line of the film is T'challa's struggle on whether or not to share Wakanda's knowledge and power with the rest of the world. His father kept their home secrets for years but because of that the rest of their culture has gone without and has barely survived. What I love about the movie is how they make this so relevant to today. They discuss immigration, culture, and racism. All very hot topics and deep issues of today. Yet while this film dives deep into each of these issues it does so with class and decorum, while not shying away from the truth. I honestly wish we had more films that go beyond just a movie like Black Panther did.

Final Thoughts:

After seeing this I can honestly say this is by far my favorite Marvel Movie. With all of it's incredible talent and raw passion the film hits you just where it needs to. I can never forsee Marvel topping this, not even with Inifity Wars but I can't wait to see them try!

Cover Image Credit: Pixabay

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Top 5 Cleaning Tips for a Biker

How to Clean Your Bike
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Bicycle or motorcycle, it doesn’t matter. Your identity is you are a biker. Riding a bike feels like on top of the world. Everybody likes to ride bikes. But the feel gets bitter when it comes to clean your bike. 

Do you think cleaning your bike is so hard? If the answer is yes, you should go through this article. Here, you’ll know the top 5 cleaning tips for a biker. From our bikes advisor, the tips will make your cleaning task as easy as possible.

Place and Preparation

The first thing to consider is the place. Don’t wash your bike directly under the sun. Choose a place where soft water is available, and no chemical exposure is possible. Soft water means the water with fewer minerals. 

After choosing the perfect place, here comes the preparation. Remember not to start washing your bike right after a ride. After cooling it down, remove all accessories and parts which can be damaged while washing. Gather bucket, sufficient water, cleaning agents, WD40, bushes, sponges, other polishing tools, and paint if necessary.

Washing

At first, you need to wash your bike with clean water. Some prefer high-pressure cleaning because it is effective for removing mud easily. It is good, but you’ve to be careful. Otherwise, some fragile parts may get damaged. Keep a safe distance between you and the bike and keep the pressure under 2000 psi.

Then use your chosen cleaning agents. Check if the agent’s pH level is between 6 and 8. If not, there’ll be a chance of being too acidic or alkaline of the cleaning solution. Either one can be damaging to your bikes paint. Don’t use any harsh chemicals. They might super clean your bike, but you won’t be benefitted in the long run. 

Wash As You Mean It

We have seen some of our buddies clean their bikes spending less time and less attention. Trust me, it’ll only waste your time, and nothing good will happen at the end. 

Attention to details is the most important thing. You’ll feel a heavenly satisfaction when you will finish cleaning your bike with affection. Make it as shiny as possible.

Use sponges, brushes, rags, whatever is necessary while cleaning. Some areas are tough to reach. Use your brain to come with suitable washing plan. Try to clean every inch of the surface possible. You’ll find old toothbrushes come in handy and steel wool to remove grease and grime. 

Lube Properly

Lubing is important as the smoothness totally depends on it. Before you lube your bike, you’ve to remove all the rust, grease, and grime. The best way to do that is using WD40. After spraying WD40, clean all the rust and grease. Make sure the WD40 solution is not present by washing with clean water.

After that, make the areas you want to lube, perfectly dry. Then, apply oil or silicon by small drops and make sure it reaches the spots evenly. You can use special chain lube for maximum smoothness.

Dry at Last 

This the last part of the whole process and the easiest of all. Make your bike dry by removing water with an adry microfiber cloth. You can also use the blower. But don’t put it under the sun to dry. It is harmful to metal surfaces. 

You can polish your bike after it’s completely dry. Finally, you’re ready to take a ride well deserved.

Final words

You should regularly clean your bike in order to keep it running and performing smoothly. Many accidents happen because of faulty parts. You’ll be able to check and replace the faulty parts while cleaning and tuning.

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