A robot is any mechanical device designed to perform the work usually done by a human. However, not all robots look like humans. Humanoid robots do. With structures based on the human body, humanoid robots are capable of walking with a biped gait, interacting with humans, gaining new skills without assistance, and recharging themselves. Scientists use them to research the human body—in order to improve prostheses, for example—but they have many other functions. What else can humanoid robots do?
Back in the day
The German Tirpitz, sister ship of the similarly ill-fated Bismarck, was the largest battleship ever built in Europe. Though she was sent to waters around German-occupied Norway and never really saw action in World War II, her mere presence threatened Allied convoys and tied up their naval resources. The Allies therefore launched numerous attacks on the Tirpitz in an effort to destroy her. After the Allies succeeded, her armor plates were supposedly repurposed for what use?
Born on a day like today
Mance was a member of a French association that planned a utopian colony at Montreal. With the support of the French queen, Anne of Austria, she sailed with the first settlers in 1641. Mance, who had cared for victims of the Thirty Years War and the plague while in France, opened Montreal's first hospital, the Hôtel-Dieu, in 1644. In 1650, she visited France and returned with a large donation meant to fund the hospital. Rather than use it for its intended purpose, Mance did what with the money?