One of the most tedious things in life is sorting items, especially if we have a lot of them. We as humans are not quite up to the task, but we do it anyway since there’s no alternative. However, such may no longer be the case due to the rise of this particular MIT robot.
With robots on the rise, it makes sense for these little metal men to perform difficult tasks for their creators. That’s why engineers at the Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL) at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, have decided to create a robot designed to help humans sort items.
This MIT robot is creepy
The reason we say this is because it has the ability to sort objects by reading the minds of its owner. For this to happen, the owner must be wearing what is known as a electroencephalograph monitor on his or her head in order for the robot to gather important data.
The software inside both the robot and the monitor, are able to detect brain signals known as error-related potentials. The signal is emitted when the user sees the robot placing an item in the wrong area. Now, if no signal is being emitted, then it simply means the robot is doing a good job.
Whenever the robot makes a mistake, it goes about placing the object in the other box, and even goes as far as to change facial expressions to show its displeasure.
Who is it for?
Looking at what the MIT robot is capable of doing via the available video, it’s clear it would work best with disabled individuals who are unable to move around freely. A person without arms could benefit greatly by having such a robot within their vicinity to help with putting items in the right place.
War veterans who are seriously injured and unable to move, could also benefit in a huge way from this robot.
We also view this as a great idea for some businesses. A shop or store with a lot of shelf space would likely work well with this impressive robot. The only downside is the possible fact that the robot could destroy jobs. The merchandising workforce would suffer seeing as robots can do the same job for a fraction of the cost.
If we look at what is happening today with several fast food restaurants in the United States and Europe, there’s a clear plan to have robots replace regular workers. There’s a McDonald’s in Phoenix where a lot of the work is done by robots, so it’s not too farfetched to believe the mind reading robot from Massachusetts Institute of Technology could one day introduce itself in the workforce.
When is it coming?
The creators of this MIT robot did not give a timeframe, but from what we can tell by looking at it, it’s far from ready for prime time. We may have to wait decades for something like this to enter the public domain, and at the same time, it may never mature enough to warrant a release outside of the MIT labs.