Technologies from other industries, such as the motion sensitivity of Microsoft's Kinect, can be used to develop robots with sufficient sensory capability to work alongside human beings in distribution centers. That's the vision of Tom Bonkenburg, director of European operations for St. Onge Co., a consulting firm. Bonkenburg says Kinect is a good example of the kind of tech that the robotics industry couldn't have developed itself due to scale. "Developments in the robotics world rely on the consumer electronics and automotive industries to develop improved computer power, sensors and actuators that can be repurposed for robotics," Bonkenburg said.
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