Humanoid robots are often seen performing a number of complex tasks, but the most common applications of robots actually take place in factories and do not involve robots made to look like people. Robotic arms and other factory machinery are very common, and these robots may perform specific duties or more general tasks. Other applications of robots may take place in schools, military organizations, or medical facilities. Outside practical uses, robots are also used for play, companionship, and entertainment.
Robotic arms in factories are commonplace, and robots are sometimes designed to perform a specific task. For example, a robot may be designed to assemble a particular item or apply a specific substance. In certain cases, applications of robots might include transportation duties or solutions to other problems unique to certain products. Advances in robotics can lead to additional applications, and it may someday be possible to run all factories entirely through this technology.
Other applications of robots also play on the ability of these machines to perform highly complicated, repetitive, and even dangerous tasks. Sorting objects, doing undesirable cleaning work, or working in conditions unsuitable for humans are all possibilities for robots. In science, use of robots is common in dangerous exploratory work. These applications become more common as the cost of these machines goes down.
One of the most unique applications of robots is education, in which building small robots is used to help gain the skills needed to work on larger projects. These robots may not perform important tasks, but they often require advanced skills to construct. Concepts used in robotics can be difficult to understand, and use of artificial problems for robots can help teach these skills through actual work.
Military robots are used primarily for dangerous combat situations, but some can be used as basic help when carrying heavy goods or moving objects. Combat robots are almost never fully automatic due to ethical considerations, which means they are not full members of this category of machinery. Robots are also used by government research agencies for work in space and in deep oceans.
Use of robots for entertainment is less common in reality but more commonly portrayed and discussed by the general public. Fighting robots and robots that can hold conversations or play games exist in basic forms, but this form of entertainment is somewhat uncommon. Robotic toys are often highly simplistic but have the potential to become fully functioning play partners for children. Likewise, androids that talk and move could someday play important societal roles as servants and companions.