Ancient papyrus III century BC, the time of Pharaoh Ptolemy II Philadelph, say the creation of the first mechanical man. Aristotle spoke of a statue of Venus with a mechanism inside it, through which it could move. Homer in the Iliad wrote about humanlike creatures. And the Roman emperor Charles V loved mechanical toys in the form of foot and horse knights, who marched and fought among themselves. All this indicates that people at all times were interested in mechanical devices that imitate the appearance and behavior of a person.
So in 1774 the Swiss watchmaker Pierre-Jacques Droux and his son Henri Droux created the first android "The Writer" (with an English writer). The next invention of these talented people was the humanoid robot Pianist or Lady Musician - a robot-woman playing on the popular keyboard-wind musical instrument of that time.
There are many legends about the creation of other mechanical humanoid devices: for example, the android Gabriel de Magellan, the great navigator; hours with figures of moving people of master Kulibin; android Wolfgang Kempelen, who played chess with Napoleon himself; steam iron robot John Mora in the late XIX century, etc.
An unattainable task for the masters of that period was the creation of an intelligent, intelligent device that could talk, listen, analyze the environment and make decisions independently. It took a lot of time and knowledge to achieve the level of capabilities that modern robots-humanoids and androids possess.
At the moment, a huge number of different androids are created and, each of them, is intended for a specific and specific purpose. The popularity of some models led to the commercialization of some projects. For example, the same ASIMO already today can be purchased at a price of just over 1 million dollars. There are models of commercial service robots, such as REEM-C from PAL Robotics, which serve as a platform for the owner to walk, capture, navigate, control the whole body, interact between a person and a robot, and much more.
Today, anyone can acquire a real robot, who will do all that his immediate master wants. And man's plans are limited not only to research in the field of robotics, but also to meet their physical needs. A vivid example is the brainchild of an electrical engineer and scientist Douglas Hines - sex robots Rocky and Roxxxy, which were developed by the Japanese National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology.
One of the main tasks of scientists is to teach the robot precise human movements. If with the manipulation of the hands is easier, then with gait or walking in different terrain, in different conditions, everything is much more complicated. A huge number of different companies and organizations work on this problem. An example of work on a complex technical process are Roboray from Samsung, ATLAS from DARPA, iCub from RobotCub, WABIAN-2RIII from Humanoid Robotics and others.
Inspired by biorobots, scientists from the University of Tokyo (University of Tokyo) decided to create bones and muscles for the robot. The humanoid is called Kenshiro, he imitates the body of an average Japanese man of 12 years old, height 158 centimeters and weight 50 kilograms. Kenshiro reflects 160 basic muscles of a person: 50 in the legs, 76 in the body, 12 in the shoulders, and 22 in the neck.
Three researchers in the field of robotics David Hanson, Mark Tilden and theorist Gino Yu have teamed up to create a smart robot android. The result of their work was Adam Z1, which has the intelligence of a three-year-old child. Robot DeeChee teaches the first words, NICO is able to recognize itself in the mirror, and iCub teaches the human language - and this is not all the achievements of modern robotics.
Separately it is necessary to note robots-androids developed for space. The most popular "cosmonauts" were Kirobo and Robonaut 2. The humanoid communication robot Kirobo is the development of the RCAST, Robo Garage and TMC research center and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), which successfully arrived on the ISS on August 9, 2013. The growth of android 34 cm and weight 1 kg, it is designed to communicate with people in working conditions in space, sending messages and photographs of crew members, etc.
The second "cosmonaut" - Robonaut 2, developed by the NASA Center Johnson Space (JSC) and General Motors, is an autonomous, intelligent, high-tech device for performing very complex tasks in outer space. Recently it became known that feet were added to the body of the prototype. The Android becomes more and more like a human being.
Androids with a human face
It is no longer the news that humanoids and androids can talk, sing, play football, compete with each other and even communicate with people. The foremost researcher and creator of the robots, most similar to the person is the Japanese professor Hiroshi Ishiguro (Hiroshi Ishiguro). His work makes people believe in the reality of the existence of androids in human form. The scientist created a robot-copy of himself. The humanoid is able to transmit emotions, gestures and movements of the host at a distance. For this purpose, special sensors are used, placed on the person, hands and body of a person. At the exhibition "Robots in Motion" in Hong Kong, Hiroshi Ishiguro introduced the singing robot girl Geminoid F, which completely conveys the gestures and facial expressions of the live performer. Later in Osaka appeared the humanoid robot Minami in the female guise, which entertained the visitors of one of the department stores.
The child-android Diego-san, who is the brainchild of the University of California Perception Laboratory in San Diego (UCSD), today has the most realistic face that can convey facial expressions and emotions. The height of the baby is 130 cm, weight 30 kg, the body has 44 pneumatic connections, and its head contains 27 moving parts. The robot is designed as a research platform for studying the cognitive development of infants and will contain the work of UCSD with natural communication, including such opportunities as reading and imitating facial expressions.
Robots-humanoids for help and entertainment
The psychology of people is designed in such a way that a person wants to see in his assistant not a faceless mechanism, but a device with signs of animation. For this, developers in the field of robotics tend to give their creations an anthropic appearance. Robots-humanoids or androids are very popular among the people. They can help the elderly, for example, Romeo from the company Aldebaran Robotics, is able to bring food, take out the garbage or just entertain the host.
With the help of robot-nurse Robovie, scientists were able to learn how children interact with a humanoid robot, whose goal was to establish social and emotional contact. Robots-cooks, robots-waiters, robots-guides, etc. - All these assistants are created to make life easier for the owner and save him from daily routine work.
For security purposes, automatic devices and mechanisms, including humanoid robots such as Thor-MANG from Robotis - the robot for working in hostile environments, SAFFiR (Shipboard Autonomous Firefighting Robot) from NRL to extinguish fires on sea vessels and others - are beginning to be used for safety.
In the entertainment industry there is a huge number of androids that can sing (Pre-made Me, Hubos), dance (mRobo from TOSY) and even participate in sporting events: Boxers Cloudrobots from TTTECHRobot, RQ-TITAN from RoboBuilder, Ping-Pong players BHR-4 and BHR-5.
Medicine is changing every day due to the use of new robotic systems and devices. For some areas, it has become advisable to use humanoid robots that are able not only to treat people, but to give them moral and psychological support during the course of the disease. An example of medical androids are: Kaspar and Zeno to help children with autism, HRP-2 from CNRS-AIST, a robot assistant for paralyzed people who can control it with thoughts, Vomiting Larry - a vicious robot for researching malicious viruses.
Remember the old films, where the terrible iron robots-humanoids, who flew on space ships, break into the houses of ordinary people and hit them with their lasers. Or the most popular movie about the android "Terminator", where a robot from the future wants to kill the main characters of the tape. Attitude to the humanoids of our time is not as aggressive and hostile as it was a few dozen years ago. With the advent of modern models of robots, people began to understand the importance of these devices in everyday life, as well as their contribution to the development of science and technology. Creators seek to automate many processes, introduce self-helpers in everyday life, in order to facilitate the existence of the owner, without pursuing goals and without giving birth to thoughts about the dangers of robots for a person. Every day, scientists from around the world are working on the process of improving humanoid robots, breathing new opportunities into them. They seek to bring the androids closer to the maximum likeness with man: to give them enormous functionality and great unlimited intellect, and to explore all the human senses approaching the full awareness and concept of processes occurring in a living organism.
For some, this article will be the discovery of new ideas and developments, for others - a pleasant memory. Our task is to introduce people to the world of robotics, bringing them closer to the future. Robots-humanoids are one of the most interesting topics. And, relying on the constant confrontation between man and machine, we can confidently say that these soulless creatures, called robots, began capturing people - capturing their hearts and thoughts.