Thursday, April 26, 2012

Robots in space have several clear advantages over astronauts: they are cheaper to launch; they can be designed to perform experiments of very high precision without interference from a cumbersome pressure suit; and since they are not alive in any traditional sense of the word, they cannot be killed in a space accident. Nevertheless, until computers can simulate human curiosity and human sparks of insight, and until computers can synthesize information and recognize a serendipitous discovery when it stares them in the face, robots will remain tools designed to discover what we already expect to find. Unfortunately, profound insights into nature lurk behind questions we have yet to ask.
- from Space Chronicles: Facing the Ultimate Frontier by Neil deGrasse Tyson

No comments: