Newsletters
Business News for Technology Decision-Makers NewsFactor Sites:       NewsFactor.com     Enterprise Security Today     CRM Daily     Business Report     Sci-Tech Today  
   
This ad will display for the next 20 seconds. Please click for more information, or scroll down to pass the ad, or Close Ad.
Home Business Briefing Mobile Industry News Small Business Tech Trends More Topics...
Digital Life
24/7/365 Network Uptime!
Average Rating:
Rate this article:  
Google Launches
Google Launches 'Moonshot' Robot Delivery Vision

By Jennifer LeClaire
December 4, 2013 11:14AM

Bookmark and Share
Andy Rubin, the mastermind behind the Android project, is heading up Google's new "moonshot" robotics effort. One can sort of see something like today’s Roomba floor cleaning robot as the first beings coming out of the swamps to walk on land. What Google's "moonshot" vision would be is a fully evolved version of that.
 



First it was drones, now it’s robots. Amazon made headlines around the world this week when CEO Jeff Bezos shared his vision for Prime Air, an octocoper service that uses drones to deliver goods of up to about 5 pounds in roughly 30 minutes.

But Google isn’t content to allow Amazon to steal all the next-generation delivery headlines this week. Google is proposing life-size humanoid robots to deliver packages to your doorstep, according to the New York Times.

The difference between the two visions: Amazon’s Prime Air seems a more likely reality once Federal Aviation Administration rules are settled. Google executives are admitting that their robotic vision is a “moonshot,” the Times reports.

A 10-Year Vision

Andy Rubin, the mastermind behind the Android project, is heading up the robotics effort. This is his first big move since he gave Android over to Sundar Pichai in early 2013. Apparently, robotics has been on his mind for more than a decade.

“Like any moonshot, you have to think of time as a factor,” Rubin told the Times. “We need enough runway and a 10-year vision.”

It’s unclear just exactly how much Google is investing in this so-called moonshot, but the company has been snapping up robotics companies. The list includes Industrial Perception, which focuses on computer vision to allow robots to load up and unload trucks. Bot & Dollar is another Google buy. Its robotic arms helped film the movie Gravity. Schaft, Meka, Redwood Robotics, Autofuss and Holomni are also now owned by Google and could support Rubin’s vision.

“I am excited about Andy Rubin's next project. His last big bet, Android, started off as a crazy idea that ended up putting a supercomputer in hundreds of millions of pockets,” said Larry Page, CEO of Google in a Google+ post. “It is still very early days for this, but I can't wait to see the progress.”

A Full-Grown Roomba?

Some of Page’s followers offered a skeptical response. Jarkko Suominen wrote, “Google invests to Andy Rubin but to what Andy Rubin. What is Andy's vision? Is the quality of a robot more important than usefulness and deliberateness of robot in point of his view. Where are his markets?”

But another follower, Johnathan Chung, is excited to see the development: “We've come a long way since the first flagship machine readable punched cards were invented in 1928 . . . incidentally the same year sliced bread was invented too. Surely this qualifies Google as one of the best things since then.”

We asked Ross Rubin, principal analyst at Reticle Research, to get his take on Google’s latest project. He told us it sounds like an extension of the company’s self-driving car technology.

“It’s very much a Jetsons-like maybe Asimovian vision where we would have these machines that could really act on our behalf and act on the complexities of our physical world,” Rubin said. “So one can sort of see something like today’s Roomba floor cleaning robot as the first beings coming out of the swamps to walk on land. What Google describes would be a fully evolved version of that.”
 

Tell Us What You Think
Comment:

Name:



Neustar, Inc. (NYSE: NSR) is a trusted, neutral provider of real-time information and analysis to the Internet, telecommunications, information services, financial services, retail, media and advertising sectors. Neustar applies its advanced, secure technologies in location, identification, and evaluation to help its customers promote and protect their businesses. More information is available at www.neustar.biz.


 Digital Life
1.   Cortana Fills Windows Phone Gap
2.   Galaxy S5 Phone: Less Can Be More
3.   Beware: Facebook Shares Your Locale
4.   Easter Egg! Microsoft's Clippy Is Back
5.   Poll: A Mix of Feelings on Future Tech


advertisement
BlackBerry Drops T-Mobile After Spat
Moving on to other carriers after snub.
Average Rating:
Cortana Fills Windows Phone Gap
Siri-like virtual assistant has promise.
Average Rating:
Galaxy S5 Phone: Less Can Be More
Most formidable iPhone competitor yet.
Average Rating:
Product Information and Resources for Technology You Can Use To Boost Your Business

Network Security Spotlight
Heartbleed Could Cost Millions, Could Have Been Prevented
Early estimates of Heartbleed’s cost to enterprises are running in the millions. The reason: revoking all the SSL certificates the bug exposed will come at a very hefty price. Some say it all could have been avoided.
 
Michaels Says Nearly 3M Credit, Debit Cards Breached
Arts and crafts retail giant Michaels Stores has confirmed that a data breach at its POS terminals from May 2013 to Jan. 2014 may have exposed nearly 3 million customer credit and debit cards.
 
Google's Street View Software Unravels CAPTCHAs
The latest software Google uses for its Street View cars to read street numbers in images for Google Maps works so well that it also solves CAPTCHAs, those puzzles designed to defeat bots.
 

Enterprise Hardware Spotlight
Vaio Fit 11A Battery Danger Forces Recall by Sony
Using a Sony Vaio Fit 11A laptop? It's time to send it back to Sony. In fact, Sony is encouraging people to stop using the laptop after several reports of its Panasonic battery overheating.
 
Continued Drop in Global PC Shipments Slows
Worldwide shipments of PCs fell during the first three months of the year, but the global slump in PC demand may be easing, with a considerable slowdown from last year's drops.
 
Google Glass Finds a Home in Medical Education, Practice
The innovative headpiece may find its niche in markets where hands-free access to data can be a big advantage. Glass experiments for doctors are already under way, with some promising results.
 

Mobile Technology Spotlight
Review: Siri-Like Cortana Fills Windows Phone Gap
With the new Cortana virtual assistant, Windows catches up with Apple's iOS and Google's Android in a major way, taking some of the best parts of Apple's and Google's virtual assistants, with new tools too.
 
With Galaxy S5, Samsung Proves Less Can Be More
Samsung has produced the most formidable rival yet to the iPhone 5s: the Galaxy S5. The device is the fifth edition of the company's successful line of Galaxy S smartphones, and shows less can be more.
 
Facebook Rolls Out Potentially Intrusive Location-Sharing
Looking for friends? Facebook users in the U.S. will soon be able to see which of their friends are nearby, using a smartphone's GPS. Could be a cool feature in some cases, or way too much information.
 

Navigation
NewsFactor Business
Home/Top News | Business Briefing | Mobile Industry News | Small Business | Tech Trends | Business Intelligence | Sales & Marketing | Innovation
E-Commerce | CIO Issues | Press Releases
NewsFactor Network Enterprise I.T. Sites
NewsFactor Technology News | Enterprise Security Today | CRM Daily

NewsFactor Business and Innovation Sites
Sci-Tech Today | NewsFactor Business Report

NewsFactor Services
FreeNewsFeed | Free Newsletters | XML/RSS Feed

About NewsFactor Network | How To Contact Us | Article Reprints | Careers @ NewsFactor | Services for PR Pros | Top Tech Wire | How To Advertise

Privacy Policy | Terms of Service
© Copyright 2000-2014 NewsFactor Network. All rights reserved. Article rating technology by Blogowogo. Member of Accuserve Ad Network.