Upgrading robots

Spirit Stands Down for Flight Software Update

In both Robotic Nation and this blog, I talk a great deal about advancing robotic technology. Robots will be gaining new capabilities in the coming years as computers get faster and algorithms improve.

One interesting aspect of these advances is the fact that they can often be accomplished through field upgrades on existing robotic hardware. The Mars rover named Spirit received such an upgrade recently. According to the article:This ability to upgrade in the field can make robots more flexible than humans in lots of situations. Imagine, for example, a situation where the army has 100,000 soldiers deployed on a battlefield and things are not going well. There is no easy way to retrain 100,000 soldiers on the fly. If they are robotic soldiers instead, the Army can upgrade them all in a few minutes.

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