No, this isn’t a new science fiction story, it’s a video showing real miniature robots cooperating as they retrieve a book from a shelf. I believe this is yet another step towards nanotechnology, future tech in which the ability of trillions of nanobots to cooperate with one another will be demonstrated.
In a striking display of military-like precision, the robotic team, dubbed the “Swarmanoid“, attacks the problem with flying “eye-bots” and rolling “foot-bots”. A “hand-bot” then fires a grappling hook-like device up to the ceiling and scales the bookshelf. Footage of the experiment, conducted by Marco Dorigo at Université Libre de Bruxelles, Belgium, and colleagues, won the video competition at the Conference on Artificial Intelligence in San Francisco earlier this week (an edited version appears above).