Rodney Brooks

Robots, AI, and other stuff

My IEEE Spectrum Columns and Articles

I’ve pulled together the links for the online versions of everything that I have written for IEEE Spectrum since 2008.

My favorite is a sonnet, very much based on Shakespeare’s most famous one, but mine starts out Shall I compare thee to creatures of God? And I have to love that picture of me the editors dug up from a photo shoot in my lab in 1995.

From the middle of 2021 to the middle of 2022 I wrote 12 monthly columns and here they all are, with my quick summaries for each of them.

  1. When humans terraform planets they will look like climate change Earth.
  2. There is a lot more battery tech development coming.
  3. How should we measure electric vehicle efficiency.
  4. Everyone is misjudging how far along AI is.
  5. Is computation the right way to think about cognition?
  6. We completely underestimate how much more computation we have than in the 1960s.
  7. Claude Shannon was a revolutionary innovator.
  8. Digital changes the shape of built architecture.
  9. The decades long developments that make reusable rockets practical.
  10. How the human world can change quickly (i.e., within a single lifetime) through autocatalysis.
  11. Will vast human crowds come together to cheer on the next Moon missions? (I really don’t like the headline chosen by the head line writer for the article.)
  12. How a small band of true believers labored in obscurity to make deep learning work.

And here are some longer pieces with the years they were published. These are behind a paywall.

2008 We are all machines, and in particular we are all robots.

2017 Self driving cars will need to interact with people, and people may not be cooperative.

2018 Building electric cars and reusable rockets is fairly easy. Building a nuclear fusion reactor, flying cars, self-driving cars, or a Hyperloop system is very hard. What makes the difference?


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