14 11 11 - 04:25The MSM is getting dicey about these, but they're both huge improvements:
"Cultured meat" -- burgers or sausages grown in laboratory Petri dishes rather than made from slaughtered livestock -- could be the answer that feeds the world, saves the environment and spares the lives of millions of animals, they say.
Using stem cells harvested from leftover animal material from slaughterhouses, Post nurtures them with a feed concocted of sugars, amino acids, lipids, minerals and all other nutrients they need to grow in the right way.
So far he has produced whitish pale muscle-like strips, each of them around 2.5 cm (1 inch) long, less than a centimeter wide and so thin as to be almost see-through.
Pack enough of these together -- probably around 3,000 of them in layers -- throw in a few strips of lab-grown fat, and you have the world's first "cultured meat" burger, he says. - Reuters
The technology will improve, as it always does, when you have 1,000 monkeys hammering away at it in their laboratories.
Then we have the option to have meat for which no consciousness died.
That's good for those of us who like both meat and creatures, but bad for humanity, since this will then be used to create more humans and further strain resources.
Massachusetts startup Harvest Automation is beta testing a small mobile robot that itâs pitching to nurseries as the solution to their most pressing problem: a volatile labor market.
The multi-billion-dollar industry that supplies ornamental plants to building contractors, big-box retailers and landscaping firms â $11.7 billion according to the most recent USDA figures â has been eagerly awaiting automation for decades. The down economy and harsh state laws targeting undocumented workers have turned up the pressure.
The horticulture industry has caught the attention of several robotics industry veterans, including Joe Jones, a co-inventor of iRobotâs Roomba vacuum cleaning robot. What they see is an opportunity to develop a small, relatively inexpensive, mobile material handling robot. Their venture-backed company has been field testing the robots at 11 nurseries around the country, and plans to release its first product at the end of the first quarter or beginning of the second quarter next year. - Wired
This is the first stage. After this, general purpose robots, probably not of human form at first -- most likely it will look like a moving equipment cabinet.
Eventually, humanoid forms that do everything our day laborers currently do, but for a one-time fee of $20,000 and a few thousand in yearly costs.
This will probably not make food prices fall, but it will raise the quality and cleanliness of food. Humans cannot compete with a robot in that regard.
At that point, not only will our food change, but we will have to ask ourselves: just who do we want to include in our society, now that all the basic jobs in food service, agriculture, construction and janitorial work can be done by robots?