Robotics

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Could killer robots like Maximilian from the 1979 film Black Hole become reality? Walt Disney Productions

Australia should take a stand against ‘killer robots’

We need to ban lethal autonomous weapons, or "killer robots", as we have done with biological weapons, land mines and blinding lasers, and Australia should take a leading role in making that happen.
RCH patient, Miles, working with NAO. Alvin Aquino/RCH

Robots can help young patients engage in rehab

The advent of social robots is giving rise to new possibilities in paediatric health care. But will they replace human specialists?
What are you thinking? Robots and humans working together need to understand – and even trust – each other. NASA Johnson/flickr

Can I trust my robot? And should my robot trust me?

People and machines need to be able to interact and communicate effectively. Right now we – and they – can't. But without that, we risk missing the potential benefits of collaboration.
Spectators in South Korea look on as AlphaGo takes on Go champion Lee Se-dol. EPA/JEON HEON-KYUN

AI has beaten us at Go. So what next for humanity?

A machine has bested us at yet another intellectually challenging game. It shows artificial intelligence is progressing rapidly, but it doesn't mean humans are redundant quite yet.
Can a machine really think, be in awe and wonder? Shutterstock/Photobymhu

What does it mean to think and could a machine ever do it?

As machines get ever more complex as we strive to make them complete more complex tasks, it's time to ask again: will they ever be able to think? But what is thinking anyway?
Disney’s WALL.E needed to see all the rubbish on Earth so it could clean it up. AAP Image/Tracey Nearmy

How do robots ‘see’ the world?

Robots that can learn to 'see' the world around them -- and share their learning with other robots -- will lead the next revolution in robotics.
2015 saw us complete our exploration of all nine planets (including dwarf planet Pluto) in our solar system. NASA

2015, the year that was: Science + Technology

2015 was a year where we expanded our view of the universe, embraced new technologies and got a hint of the profound changes to come.
Films like Ex Machina explore the bounds of emotional interaction between human and machine. Universal Pictures

Deus sex machina: the ethics of robot love

There are possible emotional and social pitfalls to love and sex with robots, but does that mean we should ban them entirely?
Have questions about robots and artificial intelligence? Shutterstock

Your questions answered on artificial intelligence

Is genuine artificial consciousness possible? Should we protect jobs from automation? Your questions on AI and robots answered here.

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