“Tots n’ Bots” — The Discovery Files

Babies learn about the world by exploring how their bodies move in space, grabbing toys, pushing things off tables and by watching and imitating what adults are doing. But when roboticists want to teach a robot how to do a task, they typically either write code or physically move a robot’s arm or body to show it how to perform an action. Now, a collaboration between University of Washington developmental psychologists and computer scientists has demonstrated that robots can “learn” much like kids–by amassing data through exploration, watching a human do something and determining how to perform that task on its own.