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Industrial Robots Could Soon Read Minds To Avoid Potential Accidents

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    Technology Technology Mar 07, 2017 09:40 AM EST

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    Industrial robots might soon be able to look out for a person's safety rather than be just mindless automatons. Machines are becoming the primary work force of factories from all over the world.

    While industrial robots can work hand-in-hand with humans, they can still harm or potentially kill an individual at a moment's notice. However, new advancements in technology can now teach these cold and emotionless machines to be more sensitive to humans.

    According to FastCompany, MIT researchers are working on mind-reading machines that might be able to avoid the chances of accidents from happening. Researchers have connected a human with an industrial robot via an EEG reader.

    Industrial robots can use these brain readings in order to monitor a person's error-related potentials signals. These brain signals are triggered when humans recognize situations where something is wrong.

    The MIT researchers intended their machine to use these brainwaves as a basis to make correct decisions. MIT CSAIL director Daniela Rus explained that this process makes industrial robots "adapt" to individuals instead of the other way around.

    While the technology sounds quite promising, it's impractical for people to wear EEG readers all the time, just so machines could understand them. However, the results of this experiment could prove useful for the future of artificial intelligence.

    After all, some believe that artificial intelligence is the future of industries. According to WallStreetJournal, Baidu chief scientist Andrew Ng stated that AI will "change pretty much every major industry."

    With the recent technological advancements, we might be getting closer to more safer and sensitive industrial robots. Having factory workers wear EEG readers might not be an ideal and cost-efficient solution.

    However, incorporating the idea behind the experiment to a more practical system could lead to the next generation of industrial machines. We're now one step closer to industrial robots that are incapable of causing harm to humans. 

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