Vec 1
Image from Juan Ochoa

A programmable hardware or software device, agent, or expert system, either non- sub-turing, or dedicated turingrade, that follows certain instructions in order to perform tasks autonomously. A physical (hardware) robot mechanical with manipulators and sensors. A robot may perform a physical task normally done by a biont, often with greater speed, strength, efficiency, and precision. Although vecs are sometimes also called robots (because of similarity of appearance), robots differ from vecs in that they are less cognitively flexible, and lack or have only limited initiative. Most vecs would respond to being called "robot" the way most sophont bionts would respond to being called "animal".

The term "robot" was introduced by the Industrial Age fabulist Karel Čapek. The word means "work" or "drudgery" in Old Earth Slovak or Czech.

Image from Juan Ochoa

The word bot is generally reserved for devices or programs which are not self-aware (that is, non-sophont) but are capable of acting within certain limits (see also vot).

Sophont entities sometimes use remote bots, also known as remotes, to operate in locations distant from their main processing substrate.

Robots and Bots are found in many sizes, from the nanoscopic to macroscopic, and can be arranged in multiple to form active materials such as utility fog. From autodocs to erotobots, the everyday lives of sophonts throughout the terragen sphere are made possible by trillions of tireless, mindless and utterly dependable bots.

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Appears in Topics
Development Notes
Text by M. Alan Kazlev; some additional material by Stephen Inniss
Initially published on 22 December 2001.