Consumer robots to follow PC model for growth

— 3:45 AM on April 4, 2003

There's an interesting story over at EE Times explaining how Japanese companies intend to spark growth in the robot industry with cheap, interoperable, readily-available components:

“The PC industry grew thanks to abundant, inexpensive, high-performance components,” said Takayuki Furuta, group leader of the symbiotic-intelligence group at Kitano, an advanced-technology project of the Japan Science and Technology Corp. “If sensors and actuators suitable for robots are available, it should be easy to build robots,” putting robotics on a PC-like growth curve, he said.
Of course, it's unlikely that robots will be anywhere near as prevalent as PCs for a long, long time. However, making parts cheap and interoperable will definitely benefit hobbyists and enthusiasts, and also encourage innovation because tinkerers won't be tied to a specific platform or design.
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