View EW Stats
Jump to content
Engineering Wall

  • entries
  • comments
  • views

Underwater Robots Make Their Own Decisions: No humans needed

The ocean depths are a notoriously treacherous environment for human beings. As such, robots and remote control vehicles have been used for decades to map and monitor underwater environments.

The trouble is that robots have to be programmed to do what they do. Even simple tasks, when performed underwater, require a lot of time and attention from engineers, who must write scripts for each particular job. There’s got to be a better way, right? Right.



A research initiative at MIT is currently addressing this issue with a new programming approach that gives robots more cognitive capabilities, allowing them to — for lack of a better term — figure stuff out on their own. A robot crew is assigned a certain high-level goal, then the bots work it out among themselves to determine the best way to accomplish the task.

In fact, the MIT approach is modeled after time-tested top-down command systems, and specifically inspired by the starship Enterprise from Star Trek. One robot acts as the captain, making high-level decisions, while other bots might serve as navigators, engineers or even doctors — repairing other bots.

The approach is similar to a system Williams developed for NASA in the 1990s, which allows for certain autonomous functions on satellites, probes and other spacecraft. 


Now, a question arises how trustworthy will be the technology. And even if it can reduce a lot of manpower , will it be able to cover all the scenarios of the situation ??

I would like to know your views...



Recommended Comments

There are no comments to display.

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now