Perhaps you may be wondering what robotics is all about; this is the article for you that will give all the answers you probably ask. So, what is Robotics? Robotics is a branch of mechanical engineering, electrical engineering and computer engineering that entails the design, construction, operation, and application of robots as well as computer system for their control, sensory feedback, and information processing. Most probably you about robots but here is the definition; it is a mechanical or virtual artificial agent, mostly an electro- mechanical machine guided by a computer program or electronic circuitry.
As the definition suggests robotics is an academic field for those aspiring to be developers of robots. Learners should be willing to interact with topics like; planar and spatial kinematics, and motion planning , 3D graphic simulation, control design, task modeling, embedded software, actuators and sensors, wireless networking and human machine interface. Be ready to design and fabricate working robotic systems.
I know my now be sounding like some lecture going by the above explanation which may seem too academic for you, so I may pose and ask, what is the first thing that comes to your when you hear robotics or robot? To many it’s a machine that imitates a human perhaps Terminator, Star Trek: The Next Generation or the androids in Star Wars. However these only inhabit science fiction. People still haven’t been able to give robot enough allIcommon sense’ to reliably interact with a dynamic world.
The Rodney Brooks and his team at MIT Artificial Intelligence Lab are working on creating such humanoid robots. Currently you are bound to encounter robots that are too dangerous, onerous, boring or just plain nasty. Over a million of these robots are working for us today in auto, medical, manufacturing and space industries. Robots like Mars Rover Sojourner and the upcoming Mars Exploration Rover or the underwater robot Caribou. They help us learn about places too dangerous to go. Other robots are simply fun for kids of all ages, popular toys like Teckno, Polly or AlB0-220 hit the store shelves every year around Christmas. That is just but an example of what robotics is responsible for
Let me take you through some essential characteristics that a robot must have and it might help you to decide what features you will need to build into a machine before it can count as a robot;
A robot must be able to sense its surroundings. It entails giving your robot sensors: light sensors (eyes), touch and pressure sensors (hands), chemical sensors (nose), hearing an d sonar sensors (ears), and taste sensors (tongue).
A robot needs to be able to move around its environment. Whether rolling on wheels, walking on legs or propelling by thrusters.
A robot must be able to power itself. It might be solar powered, electrically powered or battery powered . it all depends on what your robot needs.
A robot needs some kind of smartness. This is where programming comes in It involves coded commands that directs the robot on tasks to perform and control its actions.
Now you may consider joining the interesting world of robotics and be the developer of even more advanced robots.