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MIT concocts semi-autonomous forklift for war zone unloading

Darren Murph

So, envision this -- a Mars rover of sorts, but on the battlefield. In a nutshell, that's what engineers and researchers at MIT have created. The so-called semi-autonomous forklift could be loosed in war zones in order to unload cargo and move supplies for soldiers. Obviously, having humans behind unwieldy crates isn't the most ideal scenario when bullets are flying, so enlisting a robot for such duties is clearly preferable. The bot can even be remotely controlled, and an array of inbuilt sensors help to direct it around objects that can't be seen from in the brush. Gurus behind the project are hoping to include voice / gesture recognition in future iterations, so that simply yelling "unload the truck!" could give the machine all the direction it needs. Come to think of it, we could use one of these buggers around the office -- reshuffling hefty HDTVs can take a toll on one's back, you know.

[Via PC World, image courtesy of OneMansBlog]

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