Social robots will become family members in the homes of the future

By Cynthia Breazeal

I first became fascinated by robots as a child while watching Star Wars. To me, R2D2 and C3PO were about so much more than just the novel, futuristic cool-factor—they were genuine friends and companions to the human characters, and even to each other. They had emotions and were compassionate and loyal. These humanistic qualities forever changed the way I viewed the possibilities and potential of robots in our lives.

These days, fully autonomous robots are no longer just the stuff of science fiction. We send them to explore the depths of oceans and outer space, they work alongside us to manufacture goods, and they drive on our streets. As robots continue to augment industries, it makes sense that they will also have an increased presence in our homes. Just as the goal of every PC business was once to put a computer on every desk, present-day personal robotics companies have the goal of putting a robot in every home.

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