The Intelligence of Crows

Joshua Klein talks at TED about crows (and the vending machine he built for them). There were several aspects of this talk that interested me

  • Crows have the same brain:weight ratio as chimpanzees
  • Crows are super smart, use tools, and have amazing memories
  • Using crows to perform needed services

This last point is very interesting to me, as I see the services he names (picking up trash after stadium events, search and rescue) as being great ones for the burgeoning robotics industry. I see an explosion of robots in niche markets. Robots custom developed and programed for specific needs.

My college roommate and I would debate the future of robots frequently. I would advocate that robots would take over many/most menial labor jobs (flipping burgers, stocking grocery store shelves), and he would argue that the programming/development/maintenance costs would not be as cheap as available labor. We’ll see, Alex…

Now for the amazing crows (and a great presentation):

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