I am not a robot. I'm a doctor and my patients need the real me.


The patient appeared to be dying. She had chronic lung disease, and she had been told she had little reserve left and had barely survived on home oxygen for the past few years. Each time she picked up a lung infection, the buzzards circled closer. Now she had tripped, fallen, broken a bone, had surgery, and her subsequent infection seemed to have pushed her past the point of no return. Still, I held off the palliative care/comfort care team for as long as I could, and she rallied.

Smart garden: Robot mowers, watering devices may keep your lawn tidy and your plants alive


As summer winds down, we take a look at five gadgets made for performing indoors and out: Netatmo weather station, InaTrap bug trapper, iGrill, SpareOne emergency phone and Click & Grow. If you want to garden this spring without getting your hands dirty you're in luck. Smart home technology has sprouted outdoors. Smart sprinkler systems remember to water on their own, smart irrigation controllers check the weather forecast before deciding how much water to give your flora and you can get a notification on your Galaxy S10 when you need to add some fertilizer. But don't just take our word for it.

Tesla Sues Zoox Over Manufacturing and Logistics Secrets


On Wednesday night, Tesla sued four former employees and the self-driving startup Zoox for misappropriation of trade secrets. No, you're not having driverless-car lawsuit déjà vu--you're just remembering the time last year when Waymo and Uber settled their own trade secrets case after four days of trial. Tesla's suit, filed in the Northern California federal district court, alleges that four of its former employees took proprietary information related to "warehousing, logistics, and inventory control operations" when they left the electric automaker, and later, while working for Zoox, used that proprietary information to improve its technology and operations. Tesla says the former employees--Scott Turner, Sydney Cooper, Chrisian Dement, and Craig Emigh--worked in product distribution and warehouse supervising. It alleges they forwarded the trade secrets to their own personal email accounts, or the accounts of other former Tesla employees.

Scientists Engineer First Particle Robots That Mimic Cells


Researchers at Columbia Engineering and MIT Computer Science & Artificial Intelligence Lab (CSAIL) have engineered for the first time a particle robotic swarm with individual components that function as a whole. The novel kind of robot has never been seen before. "You can think of our new robot as the proverbial "Gray Goo," said Hod Lipson, professor of mechanical engineering at Columbia Engineering. "Our robot has no single point of failure and no centralized control. It's still fairly primitive, but now we know that this fundamental robot paradigm is actually possible.

Self-healing 3D-printed gel has a future in robots and medicine


Robots might be a little more appealing -- and more practical -- if they're not made of hard, cold metal or plastic, but of a softer material. Researcher at Brown University believe they've developed a new material that could be ideal for "soft robotics." It's already demonstrated that it can pick up small, delicate objects, and it could form customized microfluidic devices -- sometimes called "labs-on-a-chip" and used for things like spotting aggressive cancers and making life-saving drugs in the field. The 3D-printed hydrogel is a dual polymer that's capable of bending, twisting or sticking together when treated with certain chemicals. One polymer has covalent bonds, which provide strength and structural integrity.

How Do We Create Artificial Intelligence That Is More Human?


LIKU baby humanoid robots are demonstrated on the Torooc Inc. stand on the opening day of the MWC Barcelona in Barcelona, Spain, on Monday, Feb. 25, 2019. At the wireless industry's biggest conference, over 100,000 people are set to see the latest innovations in smartphones, artificial intelligence devices and autonomous drones exhibited by more than 2,400 companies. On February 11, 2019, President Trump signed an executive order on Maintaining American Leadership in Artificial Intelligence and in February 2019, a survey by Protiviti called Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning indicated that only 16% of business leaders surveyed are getting significant value from advanced artificial intelligence (AI) in their companies. The report also found that companies of all sizes and across industries are investing heavily in advanced AI with an average of $36M spent in the fiscal year 2018. Of those same companies surveyed, 10% plan to increase their budgets over the next two years.

What to expect from Apple's 25 March 'showtime' event

The Independent

Apple is planning a "special event" on 25 March, where the tech giant is widely expected to unveil a new video streaming service to potentially rival Netflix. Taking place at the Steve Jobs Theatre at the company's headquarters in Cupertino, California, an invitation for the event included the phrase "it's showtime" in an apparent reference to a new film and video platform, though no official details have yet been revealed. There have nonetheless been a slew of leaks and rumours that usually come with major Apple events. Other potential announcements are thought to include a paid-for news subscription service. We'll tell you what's true.

Artificial Intelligence Is Making Job Descriptions Obsolete, Executives Say


As one (human) study participant put it: "I felt very stressed competing with the robot. In some rounds, I kept seeing the robot's score increasing out of the corner of my eye, which was extremely nerve-racking."

Video Friday: Realistic Robot Dog, and More

IEEE Spectrum Robotics Channel

Video Friday is your weekly selection of awesome robotics videos, collected by your Automaton bloggers. We'll also be posting a weekly calendar of upcoming robotics events for the next few months; here's what we have so far (send us your events!): Let us know if you have suggestions for next week, and enjoy today's videos. Humans are very good at object generalization--even when we're very young, it takes just a few samples from a class of objects for us to be able to identify other objects that fit into the same class. The amount of training data that it takes for a human to be able to identify (say) a previously unseen coffee mug based on their previous coffee mug experience is tiny.

5 cheap online courses that could help you land a job in AI


These days, pundits galore are proselytizing about the Future of Work. Depending on who you ask, the robots may or may not be taking over, leaving us mere humans pondering how work fits into our lives and whether we're going to be eventually rendered obsolete. Just look at the stark contrast in tone between these two headlines: the Wall Street Journal's White-Collar Robots Are Coming For Jobs versus Wired's Chill: Robots Won't Take All Our Jobs. Who should we *really* believe?! The truth is there isn't one easy answer.