Robotics: A New Business by Adrian PachecoEdit
In today's economy, despite being in a bit of a slump, and leaning toward another recession; business still seems to be booming. Nothing is being bought or sold yet persay, but in a few short years there will be a new market for a product that seemed silly years ago, but may become a reality quite soon. This product will definitely generate a lot of capital and will turn a lot of heads. The question is, will this create new jobs; or will it be held responsible for taking them away?
The Product: humanoid robots. We have all either heard of, or seen the "new" ASIMO humanoid robot made by Honda, but what we dont know is that honda is not alone in this business. Companies have been fabricating robots for years now, and some are already available on the market. The few robots that are already available are quite expensive for the little that they do, kind of like the computers that were sold in the early 1980's. The robots that are available cost anywhere from $12,000 for a small one-foot bot called the DAR-win-OP and all the way up to $300,000+ for a beta-version life size thinking humanoid robot called the HRP-4. If history is any indicator, once this expands, like computers, its only a matter of time before there is a faster and cheaper one out on the market. Nearly every big manufacturing company has a Research & Development department, and I am willing to bet that they all have a robot in production. Toyota has created a robot that can play instruments like the trumpet and violin (pictured left). Honda has its ASIMO making presentations everywhere, and Ford (pictured right) isn't straying too far from the pack. All in all, it is undeniable that within the next 15-20 years robots will be a regular product that will technically be walking and talking right alongside us.