Tuesday, May 10, 2005
appropriate technology, part 1
Once upon a time, I saw something like that and decided that I wanted to be a Mechatronics Engineer. Thankfully I stuck to Mechanical, because I soon found out that I hated programming. Labels: current issues
Anyway, you MUST check this out:
R50RD - Automonous Biped Robot
Its ok if you are too lazy to download all the videos, but if there is one that you want to watch, choose the 'Car Stopping' video.
I always believed a robot would be the most natural complement to the automobile - a full biped, intelligent version having great strength, dexterity and a library of mechanical knowledge. I imagined a robot with the ability to repair vehicles, direct traffic and watch over high-accident crossroads to preempt accidents.Now, all that is left for the dude to do is to make it actually transform, like in the cartoon. At the moment, its just a mini cooper. When he does a trailer, that would be way cool.....like Optimus Prime. If you are a guy below 30 and don't know who Optimus Prime is, please get out of my blog.
I believe in Appropriate Technology. While it is true that technology is there to make our lives easier and to quench our thirst for knowledge, there are some instances in which technology is not appropriate. Take for example those Mars expeditions.
The Americans sent a damn car onto Mars to take some damn cool colour photographs and take some samples of sand. Way cool. Not just engineers, but I am sure everybody appreciated the level of technology involved. Think about it...its like having a multi-billion dollar remote controlled car. But after that? What next? What about the British Beagle that was send to Mars? Oh yeah...I forgot, that one crashed. So, after spending all that bloody money on both projects, what have we learned?
Mars DOES indeed look red. Mars might have had water some umpteen billions of years ago. And then we do realise that alien DID exist some umpteen billions of years ago. Yeah, so what?
Imagine...with all that damn money and with all those talented minds focused in more pressing issues, a lot of the world's problems could be solved:
A lot of engineers actually do not agree with this though. I had sort of an argument with one of my lecturers when I wrote an Advanced Technology case study talking about the need for Appropriate Technology in developing countries. He said that it was a social science report. I argued that while it did in a way resemble one, it was still damn bloody relevant in advanced technology to perfect existing inventions and solve existing problems before we move on to building new stuffs. I lost, and got a miserable 45% for that coursework.
*to be continued*
Labels: current issues
My little obnoxious nephew can do more than that ... like puking, climbing trees, hiding shoes, and soon in a couple years, that brat's gonna learn how to cuss in different languages as well.
Ironic but true.
And i figure your measly lecturer is one helluva bricky dude.
lk : Not greek, just random alphabets.
stoolx : The argument actually took place after I got back the marked coursework with the 45%. I argued with him about the relevance trying to get him to up the mark. I lost and therefore the marks stayed as it was. I may like arguing, but I am not stupid ok.
however, looking at it from an all encompassing perspective, wouldn't it be the demise of many fields.
asimo might be of no use. but the knowledge learnt frm building him, such as the science involved in allowing him to keep his balance, can be used in future projects.
hopefully, prelude to mechwarriors.
GPL : Yes, I do understand your points, and they were exactly the kind of things I was going to discuss in part2