Robots Aren’t About to Kill Us, Because They’re Less Reliable Than Windows 95

Lee Gutkind's 2007 book Almost Human: Making Robots Think offers an optimistic view of the world of robotics: no, robots will not revolt against their human masters any time soon, mostly because nothing in the field of robotics ever seems to work the way it's supposed to, if at all, if ever. He follows a group of robot scientists affiliated with Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh who are exploring the cutting edge of robotics and exploring the notion of "autonomy"but mostly drudging through one single ever-present question: why isn't this working? […]

Still, amid all the frustration of the lack of success, it's easy to miss just how far robots and robot science have already come. A bit more perspective would be helpful. (Of course, that, too, might be a little frightening.) – Alex Remington