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Science & Technology

Tech firms invest in effort to produce the world's first mass market robot

By T.K. Randall
February 25, 2024 · Comment icon 9 comments
Figure 01.
Is this the worker of the future ? Image Credit: YouTube / Figure
Robotics startup Figure AI aims to develop a commercially viable humanoid robot that can solve worker shortages.
We've seen some seriously impressive robots over the last few years ranging from Boston Dynamics' Spot Mini to Elon Musk's autonomous humanoid Optimus.

But while many of these have been developed with the goal of taking over the roles of human workers in dangerous and repetitive jobs, we have yet to see a robot that can actually fulfill that promise.

This could soon be set to change, however.

Enter Figure AI - a new company that aims to do what nobody has been able to so far by bringing a commercially viable, mass produced humanoid robot powered by artificial intelligence to market.
Several prominent tech firms, including Microsoft, Intel, Samsung and Nvidia, have invested hundreds of millions in the project, suggesting that there are high hopes that it can succeed.

The company's initial design is impressive to say the least and while right now it has only been shown making a cup of coffee, in the near future it should be able to perform all manner of complex tasks.

The key goal will be to make the robot genuinely useful in a work environment (unlike most of the other prototypes which look impressive but aren't commercially useful at the present time.)

You can check out the new robot - named Figure 01 - in action in the video below.



Source: Mail Online | Comments (9)




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Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by L.A.T.1961 2 months ago
Robots don't need to be humanoid to replace humans, its this logic that shows Figure AI and others are unqualified for the task. 
Comment icon #2 Posted by Waspie_Dwarf 2 months ago
There is nothing wrong with the logic. If you are building robots to fill in the gap in labour then it makes much more sense to have a mass produced humanoid robot that can work in any environment designed for humans than it does to have either expensive, bespoke, robots or to modify the work place, again at great expense.
Comment icon #3 Posted by godnodog 2 months ago
Filling a gap in labour? You mean filling jobs that (most of the time)businesses refuse to pay a decent wage?
Comment icon #4 Posted by L.A.T.1961 2 months ago
It seems to me to be an unnecessary requirement, worse, I think humanoid robots are used because they are perceived to be 'Sexy' and more likely to create interest in the media for companies building and trying to sell these devices.  It has nothing to do with the fact a humanoid robot will do the job better or more flexibly. For example I don't see self driving car makers building human-like robots to drive a car or truck. There will be no robot chuffers anytime soon as its not necessary.  Despite the fact it might seem like an obvious thing to do. 
Comment icon #5 Posted by Jon the frog 2 months ago
World's first mass market humanoid robot will probably be a military one.
Comment icon #6 Posted by trevor borocz johnson 2 months ago
These robots might be flippin burgers at first, then later after many different burger joints, just go on welfare and smoke robot pot all day. Anyone think of that?!? stupid scientists.
Comment icon #7 Posted by Cho Jinn 2 months ago
Hey now, robots on welfare who smoke pot all day will surely robot-vote for our preferred candidate.
Comment icon #8 Posted by DayoOlabisi 2 months ago
not necessarily. current equipment and work spaces are often configured for human shapes etc. there are some applications for humanoid robots.
Comment icon #9 Posted by Tatetopa 2 months ago
Is that a good assumption?  Does that necessitate a robot with a working expectancy of 40 years and the requirement to do multiple jobs?  Robot frames may be upgraded on a much more frequent basis, or scrapped and replaced depending on unit cost. Usually in business, a short term investment is preferable.  Buy a robot to do a specific job, or a hazardous job, then replace it or modify it to do another.  More than half of the jobs in the manufacturing plants I worked in required  only eyes and hands and the ability to perceive and act on the component present on the work station.  Freeing... [More]


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