Robotics expert: Artificial intelligence will 'creep' into people's everyday lives

Artificial intelligence (AI) and robots will gradually "creep" into people's everyday lives, according to robotics expert Bart Paulhamus. 

Paulhamus, a branch supervisor at Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory said, told Hill.TV that AI is "very, very far away" from approximating human intelligence, adding that the public should not fear a robot takeover in the near future.

“It’s not overnight — it’s slowly having this technology creep in to your life," he told Hill.TV's "Rising" in an interview that aired Friday.

Paulhamus said he expects the rise of such technology to continue to evolve with in-home products such as Amazon’s virtual assistant, Alexa, and to develop as society moves toward “more internet of things.”

“[People will] start to need a mobile robot to follow you around and it’ll slowly start to integrate,” he added.

But, Paulhamus said, the robotics industry faces a number of limitations when it comes to AI. According to Paulhamus, AI can master learned tasks such as pattern and data recognition, but not much else.

“Robots right now, or artificial intelligence right now, is really good at patten recognition … but taking those patterns to the next step and making sense of them, they’re still not there yet,” he told Hill.TV.

The robotics expert also cited power and energy as a barrier to developing more sophisticated robotics.

“To create the robots walking down the street, we need better sources of power and energy and batteries to make something like that happen,” Paulhamus said.

Still, one of the biggest obstacles, Paulhamus said, is the public's fascination with the technology described in science fiction.

“When you’re at a dinner party, everybody wants to know ‘where are the robots,’ — it’s a lot harder than it looks.”

— Tess Bonn