A robot is an electro-mechanical device, usually equipped with artificial intelligence that can automatically perform one or a series of complex human tasks without any help from humans. The word “robot” was coined by the Czech writer Karel Capek in the play: Rossum’s Universal Robots (R.U.R.) in which he introduced the word of robota, meaning literally forced labor and figuratively drudgery.
Living robots are part biological and part synthetic.
The robots get their power from glucose, the same fuel that powers our cells. Yet, unlike humans, these bots are totally recyclable and biodegradable. They don’t produce any toxic waste.
Living robots have lots of potential uses in medicine and beyond:
They could swim through our bodies to target specific cancerous tumors or deliver insulin for diabetics.
They could be programmed to collect microplastics in the ocean or radioactive waste at nuclear sites.
They could even go into inaccessible places like oil pipelines to repair them [source: Vukovic].
Living robots are sometimes called ‘xenobots.’
Living robots aren’t really a thing. Yet. In the future, however, scientists envision tiny living machines that can travel through the body repairing damage on the fly.
That’s the idea, anyway. The first prototypes are just simple animals genetically engineered to act like machines.
The reality of living robots is still in its infancy. Right now, scientists are limited to simple organisms to test their ideas because they don’t know how to engineer more complex animals with self-repairing systems. They can’t even make a worm that can fix itself when it gets injured.
But there is hope for the future of xenobots. Scientists have used stem cells to create a new kind of organism: part animal, part machine. This could be the first step toward creating truly autonomous living robots that can repair themselves and perform useful tasks in places where traditional robots cannot go.
The living robots that have been made so far are very small.
The living robots that have been made so far are very small. They measure between 1 millimeter (0.04 inches) and 5 millimeters (0.2 inches) across, or about the size of a pencil eraser. This is because their creators start with a single cell from an embryo and then use powerful microscopes to work with the cell as it divides and grows into many cells over the course of several days. One day, scientists might be able to make living robots that are much bigger than they are now, but for now they can only manipulate tiny clusters of cells in this way.
Scientists programmed the first living robot in a computer
The term ‘robot’ usually conjures up images of metallic contraptions with human-like features or giant machines on display at motor shows. Scientists, however, have created a different type of robot. It’s not made up of wires, metal and plastic – it is alive! At least, it’s as close to being alive as we have ever come to creating something so far.
Human cells disappear naturally as the living robot works.
The term “living robot” sounds like something from a sci-fi novel, but it’s actually a real thing.
Living robots are made from mammalian cells, usually from rats or mice. They’re grown in a petri dish and they’re alive, so they can move around and interact with their environment. In addition to the body cells, these living robots (or xenobots) also have muscle cells that enable them to move around on their own.
They can also be injected with blood cells that allow them to survive for up to 10 days without food.
The cells come together on their own, without any human interference in how the body is formed. The only human input is deciding what type of cell gets put together to create the living robot’s body.
Living robots can move towards targets, navigate obstacles, and push objects.
Living robots are self-propelled, autonomous organisms that are capable of performing a task. They can be programmed to move towards targets, navigate obstacles and push objects.
They’re called xenobots because they are made from skin cells taken from frog embryos. Their shape is designed in a computer simulation and then their DNA is edited so that when the cells merge together, they take on the programmed form.
The xenobots were designed to take debris to a certain location, but there were also unexpected benefits to this experiment. The xenobots can survive for weeks without food and are capable of healing themselves if cut or injured.
In addition to finding potential medical uses, the research could lead to new ways of treating oil spills or cleaning up radioactive material.
They can also heal themselves and change their behavior in response to stimuli.
Living robots are not just a concept of science fiction. Researchers have been designing them since the 1970s. Some have artificial intelligence and some don’t, but all of them have essentially human-like capabilities, such as grasping objects and reacting to stimuli like pain or cold.
Researchers have been experimenting with creating robots capable of learning, reasoning and interacting with humans for a few decades now. Interestingly enough, most of these robots are made from biological materials, such as stem cells or bacteria.
The straightforward conclusion to reach when talking about living robots is that they are not actually alive. They have complete control over every single one of their actions and perform them perfectly, but they are still not alive. This might sound like a “well-duh” moment, but there are many who think that they are such. Robots may be intelligent and self-aware, but they lack a true source of life, which makes them nothing more than extensions of the humans who create them. For now, the debate remains open on whether or not robots can develop their own consciousness or if they will ever be considered true living beings. Either way, these robots may be coming out of the shadows and into our daily lives in the very near future.