There's lots of clever technology going on here, but the core of this demo is still based around pick-and-place.
For its main task of pouring liquid, Honda's Asimo isn't doing anything much more sophisticated than the laboratory robots I worked with twenty years ago. Asimo itself will be far more sophisticated, but it doesn't seem to be achieving much in practical terms. The main practical differences seem to be :-
- the self-propelled walking*
- wireless operation*
- the sophisticated hands
- object location and identification.
No doubt it's clever stuff, but progress seems slow to me. Maybe I'm being over-critical and it just needs another twenty years of chipping away at the problems, but I'm also cynical enough to wonder which budget funds Asimo's development - R&D or PR?