Autonomous warfare is headed in an unexpected direction. Scientists at the University of Maryland Institute for Advanced Computer Studies, working with the Army’s legendary Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, are developing the ability for robots — don’t freak out yet — to cook. Okay, now it’s safe to spazz out. Through a process called machine learning involving “how to” Youtube videos, these robots are being “taught” to prepare food and it’s their ability to learn simple tasks that makes them an ideal fit for utility-based military service.
“This learning-based approach is a significant step towards developing technologies that could have benefits in areas such as military repair and logistics,” Reza Ghanadan, the program manager for DARPA’s Defense Sciences Offices, told the Independent.
Robotics have a great deal to offer the services, especially long-term and repetitive action, like scrambling thousands of eggs, or more likely, making simple repairs or performing manual labor. As it stands, it’s unclear if future galleys or chow halls will be serviced by robots rocking a chef’s hat.