December 23, 2013

A Bright Future for Smart Robots

A Bright Future for Smart Robots

Google’s acquisition of Massachusetts robotics firm Boston Dynamics has put robots in the spotlight recently. Over the past decade, robots—both humanoid and non-humanoid—have gained traction in sectors like manufacturing, defense, and healthcare. With Google’s recent acquisitions of six robotics companies across various sectors, robots are gaining credibility and media attention across industries.

Proven Robots are Here Today

At Aethon, we’re excited to see robots gaining mainstream attention in the business world. They are practical, versatile, and offer clear economic benefits. Aethon’s autonomous smart mobile robot, TUG, has been assisting hospital workers and patients for 10 years.

Robots like Aethon’s TUG are designed to interact directly with people, helping them focus on crucial tasks while handling mundane or less critical jobs autonomously. These robots require intelligence to operate in human environments without predefined work zones, integrating seamlessly into workflows alongside non-experts or those without specialized training.

The Shift Toward People and Robots Working Together

Julie Shah, speaking in the MIT Technology Review, noted the shift toward robots working alongside humans in roles such as hospital medicine delivery and complex machinery assembly.

Incorporating Mobile Robots Into Existing Facilities

Implementing autonomous robots shouldn’t necessitate redesigning our physical or workflow structures. Robots should interact on human terms, ensuring safety and adaptability in real-time environments. Aethon’s experience in hospitals demonstrates TUG’s ability to navigate older hospital infrastructures while working closely with healthcare staff, patients, and visitors.

However, merely automating existing processes without adapting to new opportunities limits technology’s potential. While robots must integrate smoothly into existing workflows, some adaptation is essential to maximize the benefits of investment.

For more information on Aethon’s autonomous smart mobile robots, contact us at

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