“We are still at the 'horseless carriage stage of this technology,” Peter Singer says in a new Brookings Institute piece on robotics. Singer, director of the 21st Century Defense Initiative and a senior fellow at Brookings, knows what he’s talking about. His book Wired for War is the seminal text on the topic of robotic warfare and the ongoing robotics revolution. And if you’re not going to read the book (and really, you should), he’s posted a fantastic piece on the state of the robotics revolution over at Brookings that can quickly bring you up so speed. As the U.S. prepares to open the national airspace to unmanned robotic systems and our various foreign engagements keep military robotics up high on the defense budget, we’re all taking part in an era of unprecedented robotic research and development, prompting Singer to ask: “Are we going to let the fact that what is unveiling itself now seems like science-fiction to keep us in denial of the fact that it is already part of our technological and political reality?”
Five amazing, clean technologies that will set us free, in this month's energy-focused issue. Also: how to build a better bomb detector, the robotic toys that are raising your children, a human catapult, the world's smallest arcade, and much more.