A irreverent non-technical review of the history of surprisingly animate machines, from ancient Egypt to current times. Areas include teleoperators for hazardous environments, assembly systems, medical applications, entertainment, and science fiction. The talk has over 100 slides, covering such varied topics as Memnon son of Dawn, Droz's automata, Vaucanson's duck, cathedral clocks, Von Kempelen's chess player, household robots, Asimov's laws, Disneyland, dinosaurs, and movie droids and cyborgs.
Dave Grossman received his PhD in physics at the Cambridge Electron Accelerator. He then joined Gerry O'Neill's group at Princeton, commuting to the ADONE electron/positron ring at Frascati. He then abandoned high energy physics and joined IBM Research, where he managed groups on robotics research and AI. After 25 years at IBM, he co-founded an internet company in Silicon Valley. Subsequently he worked on Stanford projects in the mechanical engineering department and in the medical school. Additionally, he has been building in his garage a huge cosmic ray exhibit to be installed eventually in the Chabot Space & Science Center in Oakland. Six months ago he joined SLAC as a part-time tour guide.
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