To experience the state-of-the-art in autonomous mobile manipulation, you'll want to find some well-funded academic lab to visit. Or maybe check out Google, or Amazon, or Toyota Research, or drop in on the RoboCup@Home competition. Really, the only other place you're likely to find an autonomous mobile manipulator is in a relatively structured environment in a factory or warehouse, and even that is pretty rare. Mobile manipulation is super hard, especially when you try to do it in a less structured environment which may be full of all sorts of horribly unpredictable things (like humans).
Lacking major changes, the ongoing U.S. healthcare crisis will continue. A lack of trained medical and clinical professionals, increased demand due to chronic diseases in the U.S., and our rapidly aging population worsen any chance of slowing the rise of healthcare costs. Emerging telemedicine applications connect people near and far with medical assistance. Remote site access uses drones to transport equipment and supplies, an instance of one new health tech leveraging another. Robotics can also assist telemedicine.
If you're not a member of the healthcare community, then you might not be aware of a quiet crisis creeping up on hospitals all over the country: not enough nurses and too many patients. This trend is partially fueled by the Baby Boomers who are reaching old age. Baby Boomer nurses are beginning to retire, leaving a shortfall of skilled and experienced healthcare providers. The Boomer generation as a whole requires more medical care as they enter their 60s and 70s. Complex problems like the nursing shortage require creative solutions.
Being a nurse is a highly demanding, but genuinely fulfilling job with the chance to touch many people's lives. As it requires the core of what makes us human – paying attention, being empathetic and caring -, it will never be replaced by technology. However, innovations can relieve nurses of the burden of many monotonous and repetitive tasks. Let's see how technology supports the future of nurses! Clarissa, S.S. visits newborn babies and their mothers every week in the second district of Budapest.