Most predictions saw us being tended to by humanoid automatons capable of making decisions and performing many different complex tasks. (Asimov, 1950)
The reality however, is machines which perform a highly specific task and function within a strict set of criteria rather than with the fluid learning of a human.
The most obvious example of this is the cleaning products of the company iRobot. Most famous for their robotic vacuum cleaner the Roomba, they 've also made robots dedicated to mopping and scrubbing floors and cleaning gutters.
These are robots which actually have a use; robots designed exclusively for entertainment value like the robotic dog have been in circulation since the late 90’s. Entertainment robotics has continued to grow since then to the point that you can now buy anything form remote control drones  to usb nerf turrets  from almost any online retailer.
Another interesting application of robotics is the self-driving car. The most famous project currently is probably Google 's self-driving car project, although Tesla Motors, Renault and Ford have also hinted at having an interest. This technology holds a lot of promise, it could significantly reduce the instances of accidents caused by drunk or sleep deprived drivers as well as aiding in the mobility of the disabled or poor sighted.
However as usual the law is slow to keep up with technology and many legal questions need to be answered; for example if the car does crash whose ...
... middle of paper ...
... nowhere near having computers reason as humans do. People frequently point to AI’s such as clever bot and igod, these programs are imitations whose conversations fall apart after a few sentences and even an AI possessed with a good portion of general knowledge like IBM’s Watson cannot hold a real human conversation.
In my opinion the singularity will not occur in the next ten years, not because of machine learning but because of neurology. Robotics so far has been modelled on human/natural phenomena, we are nowhere near knowledgeable enough about the brain to try and emulate it digitally. It’s also heavily theorised that quantum mechanics is what makes consciousness possible; if this is the case it means a quantum computer would need to be developed before such a feat was even possible. For these reasons I feel my predictions are valid for at least the next decade.
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