According to the rankings of the World Economic Forum's Global Competitiveness Report 2003-2004, the U.S. is well prepared for sustained economic growth, though not quite as much as first-ranked Finland. The rankings take into account a country's macroeconomic environment, quality of the country's institutions, state of the country's technology, and supporting infrastructure. The U.S., while performing well in the technology area, is weakened somewhat in quality of public institutions and macroeconomic environment; public finances, in particular, rank the U.S. 50th of the 102 surveyed countries. For more information, go to www.weforum.org/gcr2003.
Are they robots or androids? We're not exactly sure. Each talking, gesturing Geminoid looks exactly like a real individual, starting with their creator, professor Hiroshi Ishiguro of Osaka University in Japan.
For industrial control applications, or even a simple assembly line, that machine can go almost 24/7 without a break. But what happens when the task is a little more complex? That’s where the “smart” machine would come in. The smart machine is one that has some simple (or complex in some cases) processing capability to be able to adapt to changing conditions. Such machines are suited for a host of applications, including automotive, aerospace, defense, medical, computers and electronics, telecommunications, consumer goods, and so on. This discussion will examine what’s possible with smart machines, and what tradeoffs need to be made to implement such a solution.