The minute Michael Dawson-Haggerty burst into my office, clad in a blackened lime-green welding jacket and wearing a big smile, I knew he and his partner had won. Their test: weld a metal space frame for a Humvee—a military vehicle ubiquitous in Iraq and Afghanistan—faster than a team of experts with decades of experience.
This was Dawson-Haggerty’s first professional job—he had just completed his master’s degree and joined the engineering staff at Carnegie Mellon University’s Robotics Institute—and it is fair to say that he had been a little nervous as he got started. Truth be told, I was more worried about his partner, who was reliable enough but generally lacked people skills.
This article was originally published with the title My Boss the Robot.
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