Practically no fantast and even no ordinary realist would risk describing the future society without robots, in particular, androids. It is clear that now one can see the prototypes which show the achievements of the scientists and engineers in this direction. Though there are still a number of unresolved technical tasks, it is possible to say surely that in the next 20 years, there will be more perfect and cheaper technologies in this area, which will lead to the formation of the market of robots (androids) of the most different functional purposes and complexity levels. It means that androids (and other robots) will live and work among people, entertaining and helping them with their daily physical and intellectual work.
Android is not a simple robot similar to a person, it is the result of the achievements of the whole direction in robotics which seeks to create robots absolutely similar to a person. The highest achievement of robotics will be the android which will not practically distinguish from an ordinary person.
One of the most basic difficulties in the way to the achievement of this purpose is an imitation of the natural communicative behavior of the person. The person not only talks but expresses the most different emotions and thoughts. To teach the robot to understand the speech, saying to it, and express certain feelings is practically impossible to fulfill at this stage. In the future, robots will learn to understand not only the usual speech but also nonverbal signals (for example, gestures and mimicry). They will be able to communicate with people on different topics.
The requirement of an external similarity of the android with the person results in the need of the solution of a number of technical tasks. For example, straight moving of the android has to be steady, and his “hands” have to allow it to move freights and to manipulate objects.
The movements of the android, most likely, will remain not “natural”, while his hands and legs will work with the help of the mechanical devices and systems, which have a number of shortcomings. The decisions on the basis of special synthetic materials, which could assume the function of muscles, would be very useful and would replace electric and pneumatic devices. Nowadays, synthetic muscles are being developed.
By 2020, there will have been a large number of almost completely robotized productions. By 2015-2020, robots will have been actively applied in agriculture. By this time there will have been robots in the streets of the cities. Those will be robots loaders and robots cleaners. The most part of the land transport will have been automated by 2020-2030. Cars “will grow wiser” and in some time, they will take all the process of driving under control (Nusca).
Robots will find their application in medicine. In some areas of medicine, they will be capable of working more effectively than people. By 2020-2025, the most part of performed medical operations will have been carried out by robots. At this time, there will have to be first micro robots which watch over the health of the person in his/her body.
In the future, robots will be able to move not only on the ground but in all imaginable ways. Robots will be capable of floating in the rivers, seas, and ocean depths, and soaring in the air. Thanks to their evolutionary algorithms of creation, many robots will be able to change their form and also structure, depending on the current situation.
According to Bill Gates, in the near future, “robotics is expected to have revolutionary changes which marked the break in computer facilities more than 30 years ago”.