Robots are programmed to do many tasks. Autonomous functionality is a feature of certain robots. Humans must always act as the masters of any other robots in the vicinity. In this context, “Robotics” refers to the scientific study of robots.
What is Robotics?
A subfield of engineering known as robotics focuses on all aspects of creating and using robots. Robotics aims to develop smart robots that can help people with various tasks.
Many different kinds of robots exist. Robots may be humanoid in appearance, or they can take the shape of software designed to mimic human interaction with computers to carry out routine, rule-based activities and numerous other tasks.
The study of robots is known as robotics. In 1920, Czech author Karel apek used the term for the first time in his play Rossum’s Universal Robots.
Though the phrase wasn’t coined until the 1940s, science fiction writer Isaac Asimov gets credit from OED for being the first to use it.
In his fiction, Asimov proposed three rules to regulate the conduct of autonomous robots and smart devices.
Asimov’s Three Laws of Robotics have endured to the current day:
- Robots should never harm humans.
- Robots must obey human commands without breaching rule 1.
- Robots must defend themselves without infringing the other rules.
However, it wasn’t until a couple of decades later, in 1961, that the first programmed robot, Unimate, was designed to transport hot metal bits from a die-cast machine based on designs from the 1950s.
Applications of Robotics:
Many different kinds of robots are employed for repetitive activities nowadays, but industrial robots are one of the most common. Robotic arms, exoskeletons, and more conventional humanoid robots are among the possible forms these devices take.
Companies like Amazon, Devol, Best Buy, and others employ industrial robots and robot arms in their production facilities and distribution centers.
Robotic systems rely on several components to carry out their functions, including computer code and algorithms, a remote-controlled manipulator, actuators, control systems (action, processing, and perception), real-time sensors, and some degree of automation.
The following are some more areas where robots have proven useful:
- Home Electronics
- Computer science/computer programming
- Artificial intelligence
- Data Science
- Law enforcement/military
- Mechanical engineering
Advantages and Disadvantages of Robotics:
Robotic systems are highly sought after in numerous fields because they can improve precision, save costs, and safeguard human lives.
One of the main advantages of robotics is that it makes many formerly harmful or unhealthy places safe for humans to avoid. We may look to the nuclear business, the space industry, the military sector, the maintenance industry, and many others.
Advantages of Robotics:
There will be no time off for meals, vacations, sick days, or changes in shift schedules for robots and other automated processes. As long as proper care is taken, it may be programmed to operate on a fixed schedule and will do so indefinitely until instructed differently. Avoiding RSI in this way is possible.
Benefits accrue to any firm due to increased output at reduced costs. It takes a short time for returns on investment to pay their initial outlay; from there, the rate of return is exponential.
Repetitive manual work may impair focus, increase mistake rates, and degrade product quality. Robotic automation avoids these risks by precisely manufacturing and inspecting goods following predetermined standards. More precise and consistently high-quality products open up new business opportunities for businesses.
Using robotic automation to handle repetitive jobs makes perfect sense. Robots are meant to perform repetitive motions. Humans, by design, are not. The use of automation in your manufacturing process offers several productivity advantages, some of which are shown below.
Stability work in Hazardous Environment
Certain industries may require their employees to labor in hazardous or inappropriate conditions that put their health and safety at risk. Automated robots may be built and used in any setting without endangering businesses or their personnel.
Once trained, robots may continue to perform repeated tasks with the same precision for an extended time, maintaining consistency in the manufacturing process and output.
Lengthy Working Hours:
When cared for correctly, robots can be used continuously for several hours. However, human beings have limits to how long they can work without rest since doing so increases the likelihood of weariness, injury, and other problems.
Disadvantages of Robotics:
The potential for job loss due to the increased use of robots is a major worry among people who fear the technology’s deployment. Considering a robot’s ability to produce results at a higher pace with more consistency and precision, it’s possible that humans won’t be needed to carry out certain tasks shortly.
Automation via robotics comes with a hefty price tag that businesses must bear. Price factors in setup, upkeep, optional parts, and coding time. Another drawback is the added expense of a steady power source for robotic automation. A thorough analysis is required before applying this technology since the cash flow has to be sustainable until the company’s stability is established to generate profits.
Expert workers in complex programming, operations, and maintenance are needed to introduce automation with robots. While an automation business may help with the initial setup, additional personnel will need to be taught to take care of it in the long run.
No analytical skills:
Even though artificial intelligence and machine learning are making big strides, there is a problem with how robots can be used. Robots can be better than humans in some ways, but they can’t think, analyze, or create based on what they see around them. Robots are best for doing certain tasks to save time and work. They aren’t good for much else. They can only do what people tell them to do by programming them.
Dependency on Technology:
The more prominently robots figure into our everyday lives, the more likely we will learn to rely on them, which might lead to an increase in the number of conveniences offered by robots. Less socializing and less wandering about is bad for human life. Furthermore, the whole workflow is significantly disrupted without a backup plan in case of any faults or breakdowns in the automated system owing to a technological fault.
Understanding the benefits and drawbacks of using robots in the workplace alongside humans will facilitate the widespread adoption of robots across all sectors.