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Guides: Robots

Last Updated: Wednesday May 18 2005 16:20 GMT

What is a robot?

This robot shows off its dancing skills at a robot fair in Japan
A robot is an automatic machine that does the work of a human.

The word robot was first used in a 1920 Czech play called RUR (Rossum's Universal Robots) in which mechanical slaves rebel against their human masters.

The playwright, Karel Capek, borrowed the word robot from the Slavic word robota, meaning a forced labourer.

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