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Will Robots Ever Guard Our Homes?

By Rizwan Ahmad - 04 March 2013 No Comments
Will Robots Ever Guard Our Homes?
Science fiction has given us a vision of the future in which a robotic assistant caters for our every whim. These robotic assistants can range from the innocent, such as Rosie, the robot maid in The Jetsons, to Jude Law’s role as Joe, a “pleasure bot” in Steven Spielberg’s 2001 film AI. There are also some negative representations of technology, such as when the Skynet computer system becomes “self aware” in the Terminator series of films, and decides to kill humanity, as we represent its #1 threat.

A more realistic depiction of the future relationship between robots and humans is presented in the little seen 2012 film Robot and Frank, in which an aging man is presented with a robot helper, programmed to provide therapeutic and general home care. But what about the present relationship between humans and household robots? Can they actually assist us with managing and protecting our homes?
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Robots Are Already Here
While we have an idea of a robot as a walking, talking metal humanoid, this certainly isn’t the case… yet. Many of us already have robots at work in our homes, whether it’s an automatic vacuum cleaner that can scan its surrounding environment for stairs and barriers, or an automated pool cleaner that can tell when it reaches the edge of the water and simply turns back. Let’s not forget that many day-to-day heavy-duty items are in fact mostly produced by robots, and this can take jobs away from human workers. Foxconn, a Taiwan based technology producer recently announced a plan to increase its number of robot workers from ten thousand to one million, which will result in the layoffs of many human workers.

Protecting Our Homes With Robotics
Again, sci-fi has given us the false impression that robots can be used for home protection, intelligently being able to assess a potential threat and then unleash an unstoppable force to repel (or execute) the intruder. Technology isn't quite at that point yet, and using robotics for this purpose might never be possible. Countries that are at the forefront of robotics development, such as Japan and South Korea, are already considering implementing laws detailing what is acceptable when programming a robot, as in a robot should have a mandatory safeguard built into its programming, making it impossible for the robot to harm a human.

These safeguards might not exist in the robotics programs being developed by the US Military, where robots will actually be programmed to assess a threat and then respond with appropriate force, whether it’s the playback of a pre-recorded warning, or the use of firearms.

Keeping An Eye On Our Homes With Robotics
The monitoring of our homes and properties with robotic assistance is already possible, and is a far more viable option than the idea of a “robotic protector,” although this level of security doesn't come cheap. There are a number of websites that offer mobile robots specifically for property surveillance purposes. Some of these robots are largely autonomous, and can be programmed to patrol a property, and some require more human control, as in being sent out to investigate a specific area as needed. Some are also “explosion resistant” with the ability to climb stairs, although these models will set you back more than $30,000.

While the field of robotics is advancing each day, we are still a long way off from robotic companionship, or the concept of artificial intelligence than can protect our homes and loved ones. Until such time as technology progresses, then it’s best to take a low-tech approach: if you want companionship and/or protection, perhaps you should consider getting a dog.

This is a guest post by freelance writer Claire Wilson for They don't use robots yet but they have great offers for you.

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Rizwan Ahmad
About the Author:
This article is contributed by Claire Wilson and posted by Rizwan Ahmad Author and founder of, He is a tech blogger from India and he loves to share his thoughts by writing articles on this site to the different topics related to technology world,


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