RE: [SeattleRobotics] Re: Legs not wheels
- David Wyland mused: Sunday, September 30, 2007 2:13 PM
> Interesting, but it assumes facts not in evidence.That's almost exactly what I was saying, however, just because
the facts are not in evidence does not mean there are not
additional facts which should, or to be accurate, must be
> The DARPA contest, ... got a lot of R&D workAgain, this is the part seen, and no one disputes it.
> done for the money spent, even though it took two tries.
> Once the R&D work is done and a prototype results, it isAgain, this is the part seen, and no one disputes it.
> typically much less expensive in time and money to develop
> further prototypes and the products that the person or agency
> ultimately wants to purchase. Seems like a good investment
> strategy to me.
> The alternative is well known, where government agenciesYes, and we begin to uncover the forgotten man.
> issue grants and contracts to established R&D entities.
> An interesting discussion is whether the same results in theOf course not.
> same time period could be obtained by contributing the same
> amount of money to a single establishment R&D entity.
The government got more than it paid for.
> And who is the "hidden man" being harmed in this situation?And there is the forgotten man. He is:
> The one paying the taxes for the contest in the government
> case is the only candidate I can find. ...
> It seems to me that the hidden men harmed by this approach
> are those that rely on government grants and contracts to
> perform R&D.
You. Me. The robotics community in general. The 2,000 engineers
who should have been paid good salaries for the $200,000,000+
the contest bypassed.
Instead, many people put in vast amounts of time and effort in
hope of winning a prize, and none of them, not even the winners,
got paid a fair value for their efforts.
We, as a robotics community are poorer. Instead of growing an
industry and a cadre of robotics workers, with all the
infrastructure and progress the government spending of a value
commensurate with what it received. Instead, our robotics
community is impoverished. The spending that would have grown
it, wasn't there.
The wages we didn't get for developing cross country vehicles,
the product we didn't sell, the research we weren't paid to do,
all that, leaves we the robotics community "the forgotten man"
in this economic swindle.
> Regardless of pious comments to the contrary, getting aYes, some DARPA officals were overheard making exactly that
> working prototype solution to a 20+ year old hard problem for
> a few $M must be frightening to established government R&D
> firms. Perhaps that is the idea. Shake up the establishment a
> little, then go back to business as usual. Sigh.
clear as the inspiration for bypassing the usual cost of
- dan michaels wrote:
> --- In SeattleRobotics@yahoogroups.com, "Robert F. Scheer"Good reading! Thanks. I'm glad I abandoned earlier thoughts of writing
> <rfscheer@...> wrote:
>> What are some of the desired outcomes in robotics?
> For my part, I had always liked some of Hans Moravec's ideas for
> future robots, eg, as expressed in some of the books/papers lower-
> right on this page ...
about the post-biological future. He's 20 years ahead of me and so much
better a thinker. The only complaints I see in Moravec's vision are:
1. it isn't integrated into a viable energy supply vision; robots must
either result in less net energy used or more energy "produced" such as
by solar collection;
2. it doesn't manage the growth of human population on earth and in
fact could produce unprecedented compounding; I have no answer to this;
3. the impact of vastly greater numbers of people and robots with
vastly greater economies on the natural ecology is almost certainly
totally destructive or transformational in the extreme; will Greenpeace
be content with a virtual version of the natural history of Earth and
does it matter?
So, we should be actively working to make Moravec's First-Generation
Universal Robots a reality. We only have 3 more years to go.
This should be a good discussion.