The Search for a Robot With a Sense of Touch

From a Wall Street Journal story by Jackie Snow headlined “The Quest for a Robot With a Sense of Touch”:

Robots have become increasingly advanced over the past decade, and are found everywhere from warehouses to surgery theaters. But if robots are to do more jobs, and be trusted with more complex tasks, researchers say these machines need to be able to interact more with real-world environments like people do—with touch.

In commerce, a sense of touch can give robots the ability to handle delicate items and stock shelves. In the home, touch would let robots know if they bump into someone or grab fingers too hard. For robotic prosthetics, having touch-sensitive electronic skin could greatly improve an artificial limb’s performance.