Andy Rubin’s New Role at Google: Leading Robotics Team

John Markoff piece in yesterday’s NYT:

If Amazon can imagine delivering books by drones, is it too much to think that Google might be planning to one day have one of the robots hop off an automated Google Car and race to your doorstep to deliver a package?

Google executives acknowledge that robotic vision is a “moonshot.” But it appears to be more realistic than Amazon’s proposed drone delivery service, which Jeff Bezos, Amazon’s chief executive, revealed in a television interview the evening before one of the biggest online shopping days of the year.

What justifies the phrase “appears to be more realistic than Amazon’s proposed drone delivery service”? Amazon claims their Prime Air service is ready to go, and only awaits regulatory approval. Maybe neither of these things will come to fruition any time soon — always beware of anything pre-announced — but I’ll put my money on Amazon’s drones making a real delivery before the above scenario of a Google robot “hopping off” a robot-driven car.

Thursday, 5 December 2013

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