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256 votes
Accepted

Would a robot really need to use a heads up display (HUD)?

Yes, because QA Source: I have been tester for about 9 years. Before you let your robot to run into the wilderness letting him kill help humans, you need to know if the robot knows what is a human ...
Pavel Janicek's user avatar
96 votes

What is the fastest way for a robot with superhuman capabilities to make money?

He could start a cult religion With a near-perfect understanding of human psychology, he should have no trouble convincing people to give him their money. With careful maneuvering and timing, he ...
Dan Bryant's user avatar
  • 3,194
95 votes
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Is there any plausible reason for a robot's eyes to glow?

There's very little reason to have glowing eyes in the visible spectrum. However, in the IR spectrum, we do see them: The idea is that most IR cameras are not as sensitive as the human eye, so they ...
Cort Ammon's user avatar
  • 132k
95 votes

Military Tank drone, why are they not common yet?

Unlike a flying machine, loss of connection or autopilot malfunction is not catastrophic, in the worst case your tank just sits idle or runs into wall instead of crashing like a flying drone would. ...
Euphoric's user avatar
  • 2,734
85 votes

Is there any job that can't be automated?

Programming It is my belief that programming cannot be automated. Hear me out. I'm a programmer by trade, and I've often had this discussion with people outside of the field. The most common ...
loneboat's user avatar
  • 1,007
81 votes
Accepted

How do I explain that an interstellar spaceship still requires risky spacewalks?

"You did what to the controller system?!" Space is boring. Really boring. You just wont believe how vastly, hugely mind-bogglingly boring it is! I mean, you may think it's a bore to go down ...
MichaelK's user avatar
  • 43.9k
78 votes

Military Tank drone, why are they not common yet?

Many good answers here, but I thought I'd add my two cents as a former infantryman. One of the biggest benefits to using a drone aircraft is the mitigation of risk to human life. We are willing to ...
JBiggs's user avatar
  • 9,601
78 votes

Can a space-faring robot still function over a billion years?

Nope! (but you can still make this story work!) So the short answer is no - the power source would run out the physical hardware of the computer, thrusters, etc. would degrade high energy particles ...
codeMonkey's user avatar
78 votes
Accepted

Why can humanoid robots designed solely for social purposes lift a 30 ton fire truck?

Because we dont have production lines that build them weaker We don't need a lot of processing power for something like a greeting card that sings when you open it, yet the chips inside them have been ...
Demigan's user avatar
  • 45.4k
75 votes

How would fembots change society?

The economy of the world would collapse as business owners everywhere discover that they can fill most of their untrained labor needs for a one time fee of $3000. Those fortunate few who still have ...
Henry Taylor's user avatar
  • 69.2k
64 votes

Why would The Machines not hunt humanity?

Because their programming doesn't allow them. The most likely way for a realistic AI to become "hostile" to mankind is because it learned something in a way we didn't intent to. As an ...
Demigan's user avatar
  • 45.4k
61 votes

Is there any job that can't be automated?

No. The question after this becomes rather opinion based. Are there jobs that shouldn't be automated? Considering the possibilities of the next 30 years it's entirely possible that everything from ...
Separatrix's user avatar
  • 118k
59 votes
Accepted

Why might a civilisation of robots invent organic organisms like humans or cows?

Robot philosophers and cy-chologists have long wrestled with the great question: what is the mind? The great computer scientist Desréseaux famously said: "Computo, ergo sum." And ever since ...
skeep's user avatar
  • 2,065
57 votes
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How can my powered armor quickly replace its ceramic plates?

There are two ways to go with this. The way it SOUNDS like you're asking for is for your powered armor to carry an entire second set of ceramic plates all the time can be swapped in and out while you'...
Morris The Cat's user avatar
57 votes

Why can humanoid robots designed solely for social purposes lift a 30 ton fire truck?

The "Robots and Public Safety" law of two thousand and hurfty nurf was enacted following the Great Earthquake in [insert precarious metropolis here] when it was clear that the scale of the ...
Starfish Prime's user avatar
55 votes
Accepted

Why would a flourishing city need so many outdated robots?

Why is banking and other critical systems in 2020 still running COBOL software from the 1970s? Once you build a system, get it working and stable, why on Earth would you go through that work again? ...
Ash's user avatar
  • 44.2k
54 votes

How does a self-cleaning kitchen put away the dishes?

One possibility is to avoid the problem entirely by making the place you store the dishes also be dishwashers. So you put dirty silverware in the silverware drawer, and clean silverware comes out. ...
TheBlackCat's user avatar
  • 3,775
54 votes
Accepted

Why bother programming facial expressions for artificial intelligence if humans are bad at recognising them?

Humans are actually very good at recognizing facial expressions and body language. While it's true that large numbers of people are terrible at it, it's only in comparison to the average human. ...
Cyn's user avatar
  • 20.4k
54 votes

Is there a reason why giant mechs have optics the size of a person instead of 'normal' sized ones?

Giant mecha are already implausible. Not only is the humanoid form impractical and inefficient for a machine per se, it's also immensely impractical for a machine which is 10 times the height of a ...
Philipp's user avatar
  • 48.8k
52 votes

Is there any job that can't be automated?

Yes Reading this question made me recall my answer to Can humans interact meaningfully with the economy when robots are better at everything? To quote it: There are always two products that a human ...
2012rcampion's user avatar
50 votes

Quantum Based AI getting around Isaac Asimov's "Three Laws of Robotics"

Asimov himself proposed ways to circumvent the Three Laws. "A robot may not harm a human": but what is a human? George-series robots are so human-like that they deduce they are humans. They are ...
LSerni's user avatar
  • 55.4k
50 votes
Accepted

Why would The Machines not hunt humanity?

Because they think that humans could be useful in the future After losing the war, the humans still pose a threat to the machines, but not an existential one. They are just a nuisance. But the ...
McTroopers's user avatar
  • 7,459
49 votes

How do I explain that an interstellar spaceship still requires risky spacewalks?

Regulations Sure, the robots can do the job better (and usually do) and sure, the AI is capable of handling all the really tricky stuff, but some bean counting jobsworth back on Earth decided that ...
Joe Bloggs's user avatar
  • 66.4k
48 votes

Would a robot really need to use a heads up display (HUD)?

No need... The robot intellect would just know those things that appear in the HUD text. These would be akin to our non-visual senses, like how we know our foot is at this angle or how we know the ...
CaM's user avatar
  • 13.7k
47 votes

What is the fastest way for a robot with superhuman capabilities to make money?

Freelance Design/Development/Translation/Law/Ect With superhuman intelligence and speed, the robot could juggle dozens of freelance contracts simultaneously and complete in a single day jobs that ...
aebabis's user avatar
  • 983
44 votes
Accepted

Why would a country employ a robotic police force?

Why do robots ever get deployed for anything? When they are cheaper. When they are better (more accurate, etc.). When the work is dangerous. Dangerous So how does that apply to law enforcement? ...
Brythan's user avatar
  • 25.3k
44 votes

In a post-apocalyptic future planet where robots are the only sentient life... why would they use wild-west and WW2-era tech?

The simplest approach would be, as far as I can tell given the tech levels, to have the robots' programming dictate that they need to use those weapons. As a potential option, have the protagonists' ...
jdunlop's user avatar
  • 32k
44 votes

Keeping the horde of nanomachines at bay?

The nanites use IPv6 for communication. Source of the image above: https://xkcd.com/865/ They are limited therefore to 2128 bots operating at the same time. Any extra nanobots are unable to ...
The Square-Cube Law's user avatar
43 votes
Accepted

Why should humans risk a robot apocalypse by modifying Asimov's laws?

Strategic dilemmas The sad thing is that the cunning robots don't have to do anything. We'll do it ourselves, out of the fear that the other guy is going to do it first. Eurasia is afraid of Estasia, ...
Serban Tanasa's user avatar

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