MIT has trained robots to deliver beer. Seems like a clear, successful solution to a common problem: wanting beer but not wanting to go get it.
There’s a lot more to it, though.
If Piet orders a beer and then fails to accept the beer or is away from his lab when the beer-bearing robot arrives, the robot is programmed to deliver beer to the next customer in line.
However, since there are multiple beer delivery bots, the robot with Piet’s beer has to communicate with the other bots to find out who has received a beer already and who is still waiting. The robots then must determine which bot will carry which beer to which human.
It’s not a robotic social occasion or AI negotiation, but it is an example of robots making something that looks like a decision in the absence of specific direct instruction.
It’s one more step toward problem solving for machines. The machine that can take a next step without direct human instruction will revolutionize manufacturing.
So don’t think that this particular experiment is all about the beer.
Servo motors revolutionized manufacturing, too. Rexroth has been at the forefront of motion control for a long time, and you may have servos, drives, and controls that are older than the engineers you have on the floor.
We’re experienced with both new and legacy Rexroth electric motion control. We also have the largest stock of factory refurbished units in the nation, and we’re happy to fly emergency replacement units to you by chartered plane.
Put our number in your phone contacts list right now. Before your robot butler shows up with a beer.