Ro­bots That Are Help­ing Com­bat Cli­mate Change

Ro­bots are be­ing de­signed and trained to help eval­u­ate and fight the changes in global cli­mate.

Distinguished Magazine - - CONTENTS - NAMRATA GULATI SAPRA

Rapid ad­vance­ments in ro­bot­ics can to­day have made it pos­si­ble to pre­dict cli­mate changes. Ro­bots are now a pop­u­lar and ef­fec­tive choice for sci­en­tists, re­searchers and en­vi­ron­men­tal­ists, who aim to make a dif­fer­ence to the en­vi­ron­ment. In fact, with the help of these tech­ni­cally smart and ad­vanced ro­bots, sci­en­tists are hop­ing to fight the rising con­cern of cli­mate change.


Trees are be­ing cut down to make way for hu­man set­tle­ments, and plant­ing more trees are the only way to make up for the loss of green cover. Ro­bots are specif­i­cally coded to plant more trees to re­place those that are be­ing cut down. Not just in the re­mote forests of Ama­zon, but trees are now planted ev­ery­where, at a speed which is 10 times faster than any hu­man can ever plant a tree! It is not the seeds that are sowed, but plants that are be­ing planted so that the trees can now have a bet­ter chance of sur­vival in their new lo­ca­tion.


Most fail to re­al­ize that cli­mate change is even­tu­ally lead­ing us to a ma­jor food cri­sis! It holds true for coun­tries and re­gions who can­not af­ford to im­port food from other re­gions. Ro­bots which de­vel­oped with AI sen­sors and mon­i­tors can track and de­ter­mine the growth of plants and whether or not they can sur­vive in ex­treme con­di­tions. By mak­ing the most of the data anal­y­sis, farm­ers can now taste suc­cess by plant­ing prof­itable species. This will also pre­vent them from tak­ing bad de­ci­sions and in­vest­ing in ill-fated crops.


This might come as a huge shock, but ro­bots are be­ing de­signed to recre­ate and pro­tect the en­vi­ron­ment and func­tions of plants. Robotic sci­en­tists are do­ing all they can to bet­ter un­der­stand the en­vi­ron­ment. These ro­bots are also cre­ated with roots, al­low­ing re­searchers to ex­am­ine and ex­plore the soil types.


Hu­manoid ro­bots are be­ing de­vel­oped so that they can ef­fec­tively dive and col­lect the samples from the abyss of the oceans. Ro­bot divers can also col­lect samples of the coral reefs in the red sea which is beyond ac­ces­si­ble by hu­mans. These ro­bots can ex­tract samples with­out even dis­rupt­ing the reef, which is only pos­si­ble us­ing a ro­bot and not even a diver, how­ever pro­fes­sional they might be!


To free wa­ter bod­ies from pol­lu­tion, ro­bots are be­ing made to ab­sorb pol­lu­tants. For in­stance, the sub­stances caus­ing wa­ter pol­lu­tion are be­ing ex­tracted with the help of ro­bots and then con­verted to de­rive en­ergy.


Pol­lu­tants come in all forms, from plas­tic bags to straws and chem­i­cals. If the trash is made to sit for long, it even­tu­ally makes way for a block­age in the wa­ter­ways. There­fore ro­bots are now be­ing as­signed tasks to pick up trash from the river so that an­i­mals don’t in­gest waste ma­te­rial.

Ro­bots have also turned out to be highly use­ful in re­cy­cling waste ma­te­ri­als and re­duc­ing car­bon emis­sions, thereby pro­tect­ing our Earth.

Like other aspects of the dig­i­tal era, the age of dig­i­tal jour­nal­ism has also been ush­ered in and is here to stay. It can be de­fined as news and jour­nal­ism which is gen­er­ated by ma­chines with a re­duced role of hu­man be­ings.

A lit­tle dis­qui­et­ing fact since it can lead to layoffs be­com­ing a norm in the re­port­ing seg­ment as well. Maybe too early to worry about that!


Forbes has an­nounced that it is on its way to use AI-based tools which will help reporters give story tem­plates and sta­tis­ti­cal in­for­ma­tion. In fact, The Guardian’s Aus­tralia di­vi­sion went a step ahead and pub­lished its first news ar­ti­cle which is more or less ma­chine gen­er­ated. It even mentioned the same to its read­ers with a sub­tle cau­tion­ary line “ex­per­i­men­tal au­to­mated news re­port­ing sys­tem”

An­other ex­am­ple can be given in the case of Wash­ing­ton Post which uses an in-house ro­bot re­porter which goes by the name He­li­ograf. Till date, Bloomberg leads the pack with al­most a third of its news be­ing gen­er­ated through the ma­chine.


The more one delves into it, the more in­ter­est­ing facts emerge. There are now even sports re­ports be­ing gen­er­ated and pub­lished through an au­to­ma­tion mode. The Sun Jour­nal based out Maine, Florida has given a full re­port on a lo­cal base­ball game, even de­scrib­ing the hit stat­ics of one par­tic­u­lar bats­man for the en­tire game. In­fact, what’s more, it even used hu­man-like phrases “blowout vic­tory” in its ar­ti­cle.

How­ever, what needs to be re­mem­bered is that these news publi­ca­tions are a one-off fea­ture and is not a reg­u­lar fea­ture. Again to discuss what was mentioned in the be­gin­ning, the ob­jec­tive is not to dis­place hu­mans, but rather to help them reach their goal of mak­ing jour­nal­ism more creative.


Mean­while, there are sce­nar­ios where man and ma­chine make the per­fect com­bi­na­tion to churn out ac­cu­rate news. Bloomberg is the best ex­am­ple of this. The au­to­mated tool known as Cy­borg aids fi­nan­cial news reporters churn out news on cor­po­rate growth and earn­ings for each quar­ter. This method can scru­ti­nize a news re­port within min­utes and de­rive an ex­cel­lent story based on facts and fig­ures.

In other words, cre­ativ­ity and Ar­ti­fi­cial In­tel­li­gence (AI) is be­com­ing well in­te­grated with ev­ery pass­ing day. In fact, these are in­di­ca­tions that this kind of re­port­ing has been hap­pen­ing for quite some time now. Noted re­porter Jack­lyn Peiser of New York Times in the “Rise of the Robert Re­porter” has pointed out that news syn­di­cates are gen­er­at­ing vol­umes of news ar­ti­cles to dif­fer­ent news­pa­pers across the world. It may be a re­al­ity that even lo­cal home­town news is be­ing ma­chine-gen­er­ated sev­eral thou­sand miles away.

In fact, hedge funds rely to a good ex­tent on AI to put in­dus­try data and sta­tis­tics to their in­vest­ment clients and tools like Cy­borg will give Bloomberg the chance to re­lease ac­cu­rate fi­nan­cial busi­ness news to cap­ture new clients.

The trends in AI-based Jour­nal­ism show that fi­nan­cial publi­ca­tions are way ahead to tap this seg­ment pri­mar­ily be­cause of the need to re­lease fi­nan­cial news and forecast based on pre­ci­sion data.

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