Billions Are Being Invested in a Robot That Americans Don't Want

Keith Naughton for Bloomberg Technology:  Brian Lesko and Dan Sherman hate the idea of driverless cars, but for very different reasons.  Lesko, 46, a business-development executive in Atlanta, doesn’t trust a robot to keep him out of harm’s way. “It scares the bejeebers out of me,” he says.

Sherman, 21, a mechanical-engineering student at the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities, trusts the technology and sees these vehicles eventually taking over the road. But he dreads the change because his passion is working on cars to make them faster.

“It’s something I’ve loved to do my entire life and it’s kind of on its way out,” he says. “That’s the sad truth.”

The driverless revolution is racing forward, as inventors overcome technical challenges such as navigating at night and regulators craft new rules. Yet the rush to robot cars faces a big roadblock: People aren’t ready to give up the wheel. Recent surveys by J.D. Power, consulting company EY, the Texas A&M Transportation Institute, Canadian Automobile Association, researcher Kelley Blue Book and auto supplier Robert Bosch LLC all show that half to three-quarters of respondents don’t want anything to do with these models.  Cont'd...

Department of Veterans Affairs Purchases 20 ReWalk Systems to Support National Multi-Center Trial Assessing Personal Exoskeleton System Use

VA Centers Across the U.S. are Preparing to Initiate Multi-Center Trial

European Litter-Robot Customers Benefit from RobotShop Partnership

RobotShop and AutoPets Announce Distribution Exclusivity for Litter-Robot Products in Europe.

The US service-sector jobs at risk from a robot revolution

Sam Fleming for Financial Times:  When Andy Puzder, chief executive of restaurant chains Carl’s Jr and Hardee’s, said in March that rising employment costs could drive the spread of automation in the fast-food sector, he tapped into a growing anxiety in the US.

From touchscreen ordering systems to burger-flipping robots and self-driving trucks, automation is stalking an increasing number of professions in the country’s service sector, which employs the vast majority of the workforce.

Two-fifths of US employees are in occupations where at least half their time is spent doing activities that could be automated by adapting technology already available, according to research from the McKinsey Global Institute. These include the three biggest occupations in the country: retail salespeople, store cashiers and workers preparing and serving food, collectively totalling well over 10m people.

Yet evidence of human obsolescence is conspicuous by its absence in the US’s economic statistics. The country is in the midst of its longest private-sector hiring spree on record, adding 14.4m jobs over 73 straight months, and productivity grew only 1.4 per cent a year from 2007 to 2014, compared with 2.2 per cent from 1953 to 2007. Those three big occupations all grew 1-3 per cent from 2014 to 2015.  Cont'd...

Panasonic Announces Winners of 25th Annual Creative Design Challenge Robotics Competition Finals

Initiative Underlines Importance of STEM Education

Indiegogo - Leka Announces Indiegogo Campaign to Develop Robotic Smart Toy for Children with Developmental Disorders

Leka Brings Accessible Teaching Tool to Parents, Therapists and Caregivers of Children with Developmental Disorders, Such as Autism and Down Syndrome

RE2 Robotics Delivers Highly Dexterous Manipulation System to the U.S. Army

RE2's dual-arm manipulation system improves EOD robot capabilities

Khronos Releases OpenVX 1.1 Specification for High Performance, Low Power Computer Vision Acceleration

Expanded range of processing functions; Enhanced flexibility for data access and processing; Full conformance tests available; Safety Critical specification in development

Innovators offered chance to develop their ideas with world leading robotics manufacturer ABB Robotics

Full Press Release:  The IdeaHub, is once again recruiting robotics and software innovators worldwide to take on the challenge of improving the way we work and interact with the next generation of industrial robots. Working on behalf of ABB Robotics, IdeaHub will help successful applicants pitch their ideas and secure uniquely tailored support packages to maximise their venture's commercial potential, including investment, mentoring and access to cutting edge hardware. 
The IdeaHub is a cross sector, open innovation platform that connects visionaries worldwide with funding and support from global corporations. In 2015 they ran their first programme for ABB Robotics, attracting over 130 applicants with 12 finalists selected for a pitch day in London, with 6 entrepreneurs receiving an offer of support. For 2016 they are partnering with ABB Robotics once again to bring more solutions to solve three core challenges in the world collaborative industrial robotics: 
1.) Simplicity: How to simplify robotics 
2.) Intelligence: How to enable robots to learn and apply that learning
3.) Digitalization: How smart 
connectivity will enhance digital factories. 

Innovators offered chance to develop their ideas with world leading robotics manufacturer ABB Robotics

The IdeaHub is a cross sector, open innovation platform that connects visionaries worldwide with funding and support from global corporations.

GeckoSystems' Japanese Partners Demonstrating Multi-Million Dollar AI Robot Technologies

GeckoSystems' AI mobile robot solutions include --required for safe utility-- human quick AI sense/avoid reflex time of moving and/or unmapped obstacles for safe auto-following, errand running, patrolling, etc. GeckoSystems traded on OTC as GOSY.

XPONENTIAL - Setting New Industry Benchmarks in Size, Weight & Power, Quanergy Announces New LiDAR Sensor

S3-Qi keeps Quanergy at forefront of LiDAR sensor advancements

DARPA Exhibit to Open at Chicago's Museum of Science and Industry

"DARPA: Redefining Possible" to showcase past technological breakthroughs, current projects and future possibilities

GeckoSystems' Japanese JV Securing $1,000,000 for Eldercare Companion Robot R&D

GeckoSystems has proprietary mobile robot self-navigation technologies that provide human quick AI sense/avoid of unmapped obstacles for safe auto-following, errand running, patrolling, etc.

New Pipe Inspection Robot from STRAHL LLC: Focus on Results and Affordability

Motorized German-made pipe crawler GECKO 9050 with Kevlar-reinforced water- and acid-proof 100 to 150 meter cable, and advanced camera head. Pan-and-tilt camera head is default, optional extra wheels, camera head raiser for easy centering and a sonde locator are available.

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Personal & Service Robots - Featured Product

ST Robotics - r12 robot arm

ST Robotics - r12 robot arm

ST Robotics have decades of experience in industrial robots having sold hundreds of robots over the years. The company has 3 main models, R12, R17 and R19 all using a unique simple industrial technology that dramatically reduces costs resulting in the lowest priced industrial robots available. The same uncomplicated technology vastly improves reliability. ST backs this up with a 2 year warranty. Typical applications are routine testing, sample handling and also education. The software is a different paradigm from most robots. It is command based; you type a command and see immediate action. Programming is a building block approach, building confidence as you program in small 'mind-sized bytes'. ST offers free unlimited technical support.