Rising Robots

2014 is the year of robotics. Google bought humanoid robot-maker Boston Dynamics (and Nest) and Amazon promises drone deliveries. They compete with myriad startup inventors. iRobot, the creator of Roomba—which saw its shares rise a whopping 85 percent last year—added a robotic mop to its line. A new window-cleaning Winbot robot also debuted, and a drinks robot named Monsieur is now available to help busy hosts greet guests with libations. Not only can Robots make our home lives easier, they may save lives. A DARPA-run contest challenged inventors to make robots to save mankind from disasters. Lest anyone be nervous about the new Iron-man prototypes of robots we often see, a crop of cuter robots is emerging, even including some of the drones that were an “it” gift for Christmas 2013. Retailers and robots are together for the long-term. We’re looking forward to the day a robot can be a man’s best friend to walk our original best friend, the dog.

Read more ideas