A Cambrian Explosion of Robotic Life

The main objective of this paper is to argue that we, as a civilization, are in the beginnings of a Cambrian Explosion of Robotic Life. In order to give support to this argument, we present a line of thought that begins with a very brief technical account of what has been so far the design and development of robots. Then, we assume that the emergence of recent disruptive technologies, such as Kinect, an information technology device developed by Microsoft Corporation, generated a simple and low cost solution to the problem of visual computing, turning the design and development of robots for simple applications barely a question of hardware construction and software development for control. As the design and development of robots for less complex applications do not need advanced computational intelligence, these tasks only require control commands that respond to real world stimuli; in other words, it is just a question of software design and development. For this reason, the design and development of robots have become a simple and common undertaking, which is giving birth to a global explosion of robotic life, a phenomena comparable to the Cambrian Explosion of Life which our planet experienced millions of years ago. Key words: Robots; Hardware; Software; Motion; Information technology; Computer vision; Kinect; Human machine interface (HMI); Emerging economies; Cambrian Explosion; Disruptive technologies.

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