March 24, 1985
With great interest I read Rex Julian Beaber's essay (Editorial Pages, March 1), addressing the question of whether we are emotional robots or not. His point of view was that of a scientist who had dissected the human body down to a series of "mechanical" relationships. He then extended this analogy to include the human persona. Equally, the same could be said of society's mechanization of human production. Ever since the inception of the production line labor has been divided so that now the human element in production consists of no more than the turnings of a mere cog in a larger machine.
September 30, 1996 |
The empty mall store that was home to the seventh annual Robofest, held here earlier this month, looked like a cross between a high school science fair and a scene from a "Mad Max" movie. An entire wall was covered with a demented collage of animated junk. A robotic "centipede," which looked like a junkyard alligator, sat on the floor.
August 9, 1998 |
Junior is showing off. A remote-controlled robot about the size of a microwave oven with a wicked-looking three-pronged arm in the front and a buzz saw mounted on its tail, the machine picks up a cinder block, pounds it into pieces and then turns around and attacks with the saw, turning the block into a pile of rubble. Then the 90-pound robot sprints across a condo parking lot like a rat and spins around gleefully in a circle.
October 30, 1986 |
Of late, the mail box seems to be a clearinghouse for robots with Cordon Bleu tendencies. That is not a joke. In the flurry of Christmas catalogues--which arrive at my house before a first leaf yellows on the maple tree--I spotted at least half a dozen offerings for automated cook-valets this year. Robots that not only peel, chop, stir and serve dry martinis but in one notable instance even knead bread and churn out pasta; all at the flip of a remote-control switch.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
September 27, 1994 |
As if by some miracle, the 175 elementary and kindergarten students gathered for Monday's assembly were almost perfectly behaved. There was no pinching or giggling, and curiously, there was barely a whisper from any of the children in the auditorium. The kids were breathless with anticipation of the arrival of Caring Coach, the much-ballyhooed traveling robot who was coming to visit them at Canoga Park Elementary School.
January 3, 1993 |
NASA scuttled its Dante mission to explore the inside of an active volcano in Antarctica with a robot, officials said Saturday. The device's fiber-optic umbilical cord broke. The mission was called off after scientists concluded they could not repair the break or ship a new cable to the Antarctic site before severe weather set in, said Randee Exler, a spokeswoman at the Goddard Space Flight Center in Maryland, where the project was being directed.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 26, 1990
A pipe bomb found in a mailbox in La Verne was safely detonated after being carried to an open field by the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department's new remote-controlled robot, officials said Saturday. The bomb squad was called in shortly after 8 p.m. Friday when a resident of Williams Avenue reported finding the 1-by-12-inch pipe bomb, said Sgt. Bob Olmsted.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 29, 1996 |
A face robot with skin made of silicon and muscles of aluminum pistons can show its emotions by smiling or frowning and may one day help users talk as quickly and easily to machines as they do with people, according to researchers at the Tokyo University of Science. After three years of development, the machine, with prompting from its mainframe computer, can express six emotions: anger, sadness, fear, surprise, happiness and disgust.
August 9, 1997 |
The space shuttle Discovery's astronauts Friday tested a new robot arm, a 5-foot Japanese wonder intended for precision work on the future space station. The satellite released by the crew, meanwhile, began gathering data on Earth's ozone layer. Astronauts Jan Davis and Stephen Robinson spent much of their second day in orbit flexing the new $100-million arm. It was a slow process with some mistakes; NASA said that's to be expected in a space debut.
August 5, 1994 |
A robot exploring the inside of an active Alaskan volcano began walking again Thursday after its remote power supply was fixed by engineers, scientists said. The eight-legged Dante II robot had started to climb back up the inside of the Mt. Spurr volcano, 90 miles west of Anchorage, Wednesday after completing its science mission when it suffered a loss of power, they said. It spent the night and part of Thursday stranded some 600 feet below the rim of the crater.