Robots Suck at Picking Strawberries

Robots think they got it all going on over humans, but, they suck at some things that humans do very well

One of those things, apparently, is picking strawberries.  Efforts tot create a strawberry picking robot machine thingie is being met with little success as the robot machine thingie just can’t match the thoroughness of the human strawberry-picking hand.

This is good to know.

If robots develop a taste for strawberries (and they might, you never know), we humans might prove useful after all.  I know I plan on going out the first chance I get to practice strawberry picking.  You know, I need to make myself useful for when the robot overlords take over (not that I’m complaining because, as you may very well know by now, I WELCOME my robot overlords).


Robots Are Trying To Pick Strawberries. So Far, They’re Not Very Good At It

Robots have taken over many of America’s factories. They can explore the depths of the ocean, and other planets. They can play ping-pong.

But can they pick a strawberry?

“You kind of learn, when you get into this — it’s really hard to match what humans can do,” says Bob Pitzer, an expert on robots and co-founder of a company called Harvest CROO Robotics. (CROO is an acronym. It stands for Computerized Robotic Optimized Obtainer.)

Any 4-year old can pick a strawberry, but machines, for all their artificial intelligence, can’t seem to figure it out. Pitzer says the hardest thing for them is just finding the fruit. The berries hide behind leaves in unpredictable places.

“You know, I used to work in the semiconductor industry. I was a development engineer for Intel, and it was a lot easier to make semiconductor chips,” he says with a laugh.

Pitzer’s strawberry-picking robot is about to meet its latest test. It’s rolling, ever so slowly, into a strawberry field near Duette, Fla.

This contraption drives itself. It’s as big as a bus, long enough to to straddle a dozen rows of strawberries at once. Powerful computers are sitting on top. Underneath, there are high-definition cameras to find the berries, and an array of robotic claws ready to pick them.

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Paul Gordon is the publisher and editor of iState.TV. He has published and edited newspapers, poetry magazines and online weekly magazines. He is the director of Social Cognito, an SEO/Web Marketing Company. You can reach Paul at