Robotic Bugs And Real Bugs Learn To Cooperate With Each Other

Robotic Bugs And Real Bugs Learn To Cooperate With Each Other

As humanity progresses into the age of artificial intelligence, researchers are beginning to wonder how well robots and living organisms will get along with each other. Will robots and living beings be able to work together to achieve one common goal? Or will robots get tired of humans, and wipe us out Terminator style? Believe it or not, we live in an age when the world’s greatest minds are asking questions like this. Although the idea of living amongst robots may seem  like science-fiction, researchers have already developed robots that are capable of working with insects. The EU-funded CyBioSys project, is currently experimenting with robots and insects in order to demonstrate that future robots will be able to work alongside humans and other animals.

The latest robot developed by the program is able to work with ant colonies. In the experiment, ants left their nest in order to search for food. Once these ants discovered food they began to carry tiny bits of the food back to their nest while marching in large formations. This is when a robot-bug was alerted, and then dispatched from the ant nest in order to carry the entire collection of food back to the ant’s nest. The robot lives with the ants, and it seems like the ants may be getting used to their robotic helper. The robot responds to a camera that is placed near the ant nest. When the ants depart for food, the camera sends a signal to the robot. The robot responds by following the ants in the direction of the food source where they are headed. The robot puts all of the food at the source into a container so that it may be carried back to the nest. This makes the lives of the ants much easier, as every time they need food, the robotic bug is available to do most of the work for the ants. Since the robot is able to carry much more food than the ants ever could, the ants rarely have need to venture out for more food, as the food brought to the nest by the robot is a substantial amount that lasts a long time. Individual ants cannot always carry enough food back to the nest, so this robotic bug has been developed in order to demonstrate how well a simple organism like an ant can work with a highly complicated robot.

Do you think that the ants will begin to learn that the robots always bring the food back to the nest for them, and therefore the ants will eventually begin to carry less or no food at all?


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