Robots can do a lot. They create autos in factories. They type items in Amazon warehouses. Robotic dogs can, allegedly and a very little creepily, make us safer by patrolling our streets. But there are some factors robots nevertheless cannot do – things that seem very primary in comparison. Like selecting an apple from a tree.
“It’s a very simple thing” for people, suggests robotics researcher Joe Davidson. “You and I, we could close our eyes, get to into the tree. We could really feel all over, contact it, and say ‘hey, that is an apple and the stem’s