[…] Synthetic biology, nanotechnology, genetic engineering and other applications of biotechnology — and the public’s role in determining their acceptable uses — were all addressed by panelists during the session. [Association for the Advancement of Science]
“Unaided food production is an unattainable ideal — current society is irrevocably grounded in the technological interventions underpinning the agricultural revolution that now strives to feed the world,” Hill said.
Durrant-Whyte, research director at the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for Autonomous Systems (CAS), has designed robots for industries including mining, sea exploration and agriculture that can outperform human ability in a variety of specialised skills.
For instance, some farmers are using his unmanned dwarf helicopter to automatically seek and destroy two plant species over a 500km area, eliminating the need to carpet-bomb crops with dangerous pesticides. The farmers may also soon be able to send out unmanned prime movers to sow fields.