Where next for robots?

According to one expert, their future lies underwater. Another expert says not to fear that robots are going to take over. Not yet, anyway.

The next step for China’s robotic technology is underwater, according to Dr Qu Daokui, chief executive and founder of SIASUN robot and automation.

He was giving a speech about robotic science at Shanghai International Robotics Innovation Forum.

Qu was one of a number of experts, students, and practitioners in robot and artificial intelligence area gathered at the Pudong New Area’s Lingang area to discuss ideas and provoke thoughts on the future of China’s robotic industry.

“Many people may be thrilled or terrified by the news Alpha-Zero beat Alpha-Go that has already beaten all human contestants in chess. But it is way too early to worry about AI (artificial intelligence) taking us over,” said Max Meng, professor of electronic and engineering from the University of Hong Kong. “We have not even started dating AIs, why panic?” Meng’s speech was titled “Date or marriage with AI.”

This is the third time for Lingang to hold such an event. He Zunqing, deputy director of Shanghai Lingang Area Development Administration, said Lingang, one of six key functional districts that Shanghai is developing, has the advantage as well as the obligation to lead the intelligent manufacturing industry in Shanghai. 

Sun Fuchun, a professor from Tsinghua University, said that although China is now leading the world in some aspects of robotic science, more efforts are still needed as “we have just touched the tip of iceberg.”

Special Reports