The science that studies electronically commanded devices (called robots) able to autonomously perform tasks, and the techniques that allow to construct such devices.
In a more abstract way, it has been defined as "the intelligent interconnection between perception and action" (E. BUCHBERGER, 1987, p.70). This author states: "Robotics is concerned by all aspects of construction and use of robots, as for example regulation techniques, sensorics, tasks planning and knowledge representation" (Ibid).
The term "robot" comes from the Czech "robota", meaning heavy labor and was introduced by the Czeck novelist K. CAPEK.
Two widespread tendencies- one informal, the other formal- have influenced, and possibly hindered, the advance of robotics. The informal one is the popular interest in humanoid robots, which derives from a historically quite old mechanistic model of automata (VAUCANSON's duck, the "turkish"chess player… and even Dr. Frankenstein's wretched creature)
The formal model has been transposed from computer programmed artificial intelligence.
As to the old jewish Golem, it is neither a mechanism, nor a computer ghost. In fact, it is the actor of a significant philosophical story, even if it nourishes popular fantasy.
Robotics has now escaped from these dead ends. It is however still too early to know where so-called artificial life, as a bottom up self organizing range of interacting rules and processes could lead us.
- 1) General information
- 2) Methodology or model
- 3) Epistemology, ontology and semantics
- 4) Human sciences
- 5) Discipline oriented
To cite this page, please use the following information:
Bertalanffy Center for the Study of Systems Science (2020). Title of the entry. In Charles François (Ed.), International Encyclopedia of Systems and Cybernetics (2). Retrieved from www.systemspedia.org/[full/url]
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