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CORDIS Express: The humanoids are coming!

This edition of CORDIS Express takes a look at research projects focused on humanoids and other aspects of robotics.

The idea of human-like robots throws up a variety of questions and concerns: Do we want robots to look like us? Is there a danger that we become attached to them, and would that be such a bad thing? Where do we draw the line for what robots should or shouldn’t be doing? One thing that appears clear is that humanoid robots will begin to play a bigger and bigger role in our lives as the century progresses. An article in the Digital Agenda for Europe’s ‘Futurium’ predicts that by 2050, sentient robots may be able to experience ‘emotions’ and relate to humans naturally, and most of us will have a robot companion. By this time, machines will likely be part of our bodies with nano robots living inside us. Our organic functions and senses will be enhanced and we‘ll be introduced to an augmented reality, potentially allowing us to live better and longer - the beginning of the trans-humanism era. We already see increasingly impressive humanoid robots coming on stream. The iCub, for example, is a humanoid robot shaped as a four year old child that can walk, crawl on all fours and sit up. Its hands allow dexterous manipulation and its head and eyes are fully articulated. It was originally designed by a consortium of 11 partners within the RobotCub Integrated Project funded by European Commission. ‘Poppy’, meanwhile, is a 3D printed robot that anybody can build. Developed by ERC grantee Dr Pierre-Yves Oudeyer and presented in October last year, Poppy’s design is open source and its behaviour can be programmed by the user. There are many other examples of projects focused on humanoids and other aspects of robotics taking place across the EU at the moment. This edition of CORDIS Express takes a look at these efforts, as well as related news and events. - Robotics gets celebrated with 17 new projects under H2020 - Biomimetic control in biped robots - Integrating Object Recognition and ActiOn for action sentence production and comprehension in a developmental humanoid Robot

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