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A kinder, gentler robot is coming


Andy Marchese has a lot of fish tanks but no fish food — his fish prefer batteries and compressed air. On a recent Monday, Marchese conducted an out-of-water demonstration of Bubbles, a pool-green silicone fish that sways its tail as cavities on each side of its body alternately inflate, creating a perfect imitation of a carp. Roboticists are prejudiced toward rigid structures, for which algorithms can be inherited from the well-established factory robot industry. The Bubbles demonstration was a rare glimpse into MIT’s elite Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL), the lab that bred graduates who produced the World Wide Web and public key encryption.

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TUESDAY, MAY 18, 2021

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