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Robotric Timeline

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* ~270BC an ancient Greek engineer named Ctesibus made organs and water clocks with movable figures.

* 1818 - Mary Shelley wrote "Frankenstein" which was about a frightening artificial lifeform created by Dr. Frankenstein.

* 1921 - The term "robot" was first used in a play called "R.U.R." or "Rossum's Universal Robots" by the Czech writer Karel Capek. The plot was simple: man makes robot then robot kills man!

* 1941 - Science fiction writer Isaac Asimov first used the word "robotics" to describe the technology of robots and predicted the rise of a powerful robot industry.

* 1942 - Asimov wrote "Runaround", a story about robots which contained the "Three Laws of Robotics":

o A robot may not injure a human, or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm.

o A robot must obey the orders it by human beings except where such orders would conflic with the First Law.

o A robot must protect its own existence as long as such protection does not conflict withe the First or Second Law.

* 1948 - "Cybernetics", an influence on artificial intelligence research was published by Norbert Wiener

* 1956 - George Devol and Joseph Engelberger formed the world's first robot company.

* 1959 - Computer-assisted manufacturingg was demonstrated at the Servomechanisms Lab at MIT.

* 1961 - The first industrial robot was online in a General Motors automobile factory in New Jersey. It was called UNIMATE.

* 1963 - The first artificial robotic arm to be controlled by a computer was designed. The Rancho Arm was designed as a tool for the handicapped and it's six joints gave it the flexibility of a human arm.

* 1965 - DENDRAL was the first expert system or program designed to execute the accumulated knowledge of subject experts.

* 1968 - The octopus-like Tentacle Arm was developed by Marvin Minsky.

* 1969 - The Stanford Arm was the first electrically powered, computer-controlled robot



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