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­U.S. Lags Globally in Robotics Development


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The United States is trailing other countries in the development of sophisticated robots, according to a recently released report written by a group of 140 experts from industry, federal laboratories, and leading academic institutions. The report, "National Robotics Technology Roadmap," says the United States is falling behind other countries in its ability to compete economically, and more investment must be made in the technology. The report urges the U.S. Congress to increase spending in the fiscal year 2010 budget, and calls on the Obama administration to establish a high profile position at the White House to coordinate and integrate robotics policy throughout the government.

The European Union, Japan, Korea, and other major countries all have made significant research and development investments in robotics technology, but the United States, outside of unmanned systems for defense purposes, has made very little investment in robotics. If the situation does not change, the United States is at risk of relinquishing its ability to compete globally in robotics technology.

The next generation of robotic technology will have a major impact on peoples lives as well as a major social and political impact on the U.S.'s future. Human-robot interaction is at the center of many of the most exciting applications for robots, including medical robots, assistive robots, prosthetics, rehabilitation, transportation, human augmentation, entertainment, and education.

From Computing Research Association
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