Dubai is affirming its position as a future-oriented city and technology to become one of the world’s smartest cities, with robots playing an increasingly important role.
Robotics are already having an impact on several vital industries on the emirate, from manufacturing and surgery to safety and deliveries.
Khalifa Al Qama, Director of Dubai Future Laboratories at the Dubai Future Foundation told Euronews, “We have been on this trip for 20 years where robots are allowing digital services to provide extra comfort levels to city citizens… now we can start benefiting from the existence of robots within our societies to offer us services.”
Impact on industry
Healthcare is a key area of robotics that provides essential assistance. Dr. Yaser Saeedi, Urologist and Robotic Surgeon at Dubai Hospital, is the first graduate of robotic surgery in his urology specialty. It currently uses a fourth-generation robotic system developed by NASA. Da Vinci Xi is considered the most advanced system available at this time.
Dr. Yaser revealed that technology helps surgeons perform complex procedures, with advantages such as minimally invasive surgery and increased precision with the help of robotic arms. I told Euronews, “Now with robotic surgery, laparoscopic surgery has evolved… the results are much better than with traditional surgery… reduction of blood loss, faster recovery and all these advantages… and most surgeons are gradually changing to robotic surgery.”
The digitalisation company DG World offers robotics, industrial automation and advanced mobility solutions and has been capitalizing on the industrial sector’s change to autonomous systems. The company develops automatic trucks, small delivery vehicles and robotic weapons. The Boston Dynamic autonomous robotic dog performs inspection tasks, including investigating crime scenes and high-risk areas for data collection.
Matthias Krause, Director General of DG World revealed: “There has been a significant increase in interest in Robotics, especially in the Boston Dynamic robotic dog. We’ve seen nuclear authorities investigate cases. We’ve seen the police investigate how they can use it for different tasks. We had contact with Dubai Customs, which focused on advanced monitoring and repetitive monitoring. “
A Conscious City
Singularious by Arious Holding is taking robotics and Artificial Intelligence to a next level, a step beyond a smart city. The group is helping to design and develop the world’s first conscious city in the UAE and is determined to redefine the way we build communities in the future.
Chris Roberts, Chairman of Eltizam’s Board of Directors, explained: “We want to create and build new cities for the future. The cities are in fact based around AI instead of relying on traditional buildings. A conscious city that really thinks for itself through AI. This is something that will have a dramatic effect when it comes to lifestyles when it comes to how we really keep and how we manage cities in the future.”
Also working on the Singularious Conscious City plan is the famous scientist Dr. Ben Goertzel, CEO of SingularityNet and Singularious Chief Scientist who helped create the humanoid robot Sofia, the music robot Desdemona and Grace, the health robot. I told Euronews: “In most smart cities, what you really have is a sort of disparate collection of smart devices that do particular things. They are not unified in a global cognitive system. And this is really the goal of the conscious city – the intelligence of the city at the service of the individuals who live there.”
AGI, Artificial General Intelligence and the Future
Dr. Ben also expects Artificial General Intelligence with the same capabilities as humans, to transition from the research laboratory to universal deployment in the next 3-4 years. He says: “I think having humanoid robots to share with us our daily environments, it only gives us a very natural way to walk back and forth with the global AI systems behind the scenes of our environment. I think this will be a much more natural way of interacting with our environments that go far beyond writing on a phone, talking on a phone or interacting with “Alexa” or something.”