Robotics is the science of creating artificial intelligence. From the simplest of automated machines to the most complex “real” transformers, robots are more ubiquitious than you might imagine.

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For the first time, Israeli researchers have developed a system that lets a human use brain waves to control nanobots in a cockroach. How could that help your health?

By Patrick J. Kiger

Some "Star Wars" fans aren't content to just watch the movies. They have to bring the tech from the screen into the real world. Get the inside scoop on how creativity, ingenuity and dedication make fan-made droids come to life.

Whether they’re adorable like ASIMO or creepy like the world's most lifelike androids, today's robots take on a range of shapes and sizes. But they're not all humanoid. This gallery also shows off a few that are inspired by the animal kingdom.

By Contributors


Heck, it's even hard for some people to have common sense.

By Mayank Kejriwal

Stanford researchers emulated the feet and legs of a peregrine falcon to enable a flying robot to land and perch on various surfaces, which could have lasting implications for future drone design and use.

By Patrick J. Kiger

Famed composer Ludwig von Beethoven died leaving just a few notes for his 10th Symphony. More than 200 years later, scientists use artificial intelligence to finish the job.

By Ahmed Elgammal

Artificial intelligence has advanced very quickly. Some believe that it's possible that machines will eventually be able to improve themselves. But could machines ever truly achieve consciousness?

By Jonathan Strickland


Break things down to the original Latin and the term "manufacturing" is literally a matter of using your hands to make things. These days, those hands often aren't human. So how are robots remaking our world?

By Robert Lamb

Will we see robots with Transformers' capabilities during our lifetimes? Some existing robots have a lot in common with Transformers. Learn how.

By Tracy V. Wilson

A robot and a human being are made up of the same basic components. And with each passing decade, robots become more lifelike. Find out how robots operate and the marvelous things they're already doing.

By Tom Harris & Chris Pollette

Radio controlled toys are as popular with adults as they are with kids. Get inside an RC truck and find out how it translates radio signals into motion.

By Jeff Tyson


The serpentine qualities of snakes are the inspiration for a new type of robotic, interplanetary probe. Find out how snakebots will explore other worlds.

By Kevin Bonsor

AI already can outperform humans in some narrow domains, but in the future AI may go inside the human brain to enhance intellectual capabilities, turning users into human-machine hybrids.

By Patrick J. Kiger

A hospital stay can be a stressful experience for anybody, and especially for a child. But a smiling new robot named Robin plays games, tells stories and comforts children in need of a friend.

By Jesslyn Shields

Many people worry that drones will invade their privacy, though experts say the fear is greater than the actual threat.

By Patrick J. Kiger


Stanley Kubrick's sci-fi masterpiece '2001: A Space Odyssey' premiered 50 years ago, and it got a lot of things right. But what about HAL? How close are we to those kinds of capabilities?

By Oisin Curran

Well, heck yeah, we can, and we have. Let's take a look.

By Robert Lamb

Get ready to welcome your new robotic coworker. He's careful and friendly, and he's ready to learn. And he could revolutionize the manufacturing industry.

By Bernadette Johnson

"Hahaha ... we've come to destroy your world!" Or so it must read in the chapter of the "Evil Robot Handbook" on what to say when you first encounter humans. Here are 10 robots you really don't want to mess with.

By Patrick J. Kiger


A robot, at its simplest, is a machine that can perform tasks normally undertaken by people. But when 'bots are too similar to their human creators, they become unsettling. Why is that, exactly?

By Bernadette Johnson

Got $15? You could build a Kilobot. Got $150? You could build 10 of these small bots, which might make you a robot master.

By Marianne Spoon

Full-size robotic mannequins give birth to robotic babies every day in medical training facilities. How do these mommy mimics prep students for the real deal?

By Craig Haggit

And someday soft-bodied bots like this could slither in and out of your belly and revolutionize biomedical technology.

By Robert Lamb


There's more to replacing human riders than just using cool tech, as the advancement helps solve a serious human rights issue.

By Chris Opfer

How can you keep motors from overheating without bulky fans and cooling systems? Engineers looked to the human body for inspiration.

By Patrick J. Kiger