Putting humanoid features on a robot is like slapping lipstick on a pig. The basic reason someone would want to do so is to do "human" things to the robot (i.e. FOA, dancing, etc. >;-D). Other than that we already have six billion expert humans out there being human so why compound the problem by adding even more "humans". Leave robots looking like machines so they can be functionally simpler and humans can enjoy the luxury of beating one into scrap with a baseball bat when it makes us angry.
I think the real issue, like most design issues, is the purpose of the humanoid robot. It might be a good thing if it is being sent into a dangerous situation where no human could go to rescue somebody since it might help to, say, comfort a scared child if it looks human rather than industrial. On the other hand, if it's just clean your floor for you, I have no use for all the extra "stuff".
What should be the perception of a product’s real-world performance with regard to the published spec sheet? While it is easy to assume that the product will operate according to spec, what variables should be considered, and is that a designer obligation or a customer responsibility? Or both?
Biomimicry has already found its way into the development of robots and new materials, with researchers studying animals and nature to come up with new innovations. Now thanks to researchers in Boston, biomimicry could even inform the future of electrical networks for next-generation displays.
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