Connected health

Of automatons and robots – a history in pictures

The dream of robots assisting doctors and revolutionizing medicine is not new. On the contrary it goes back a long way and tells the story of a robot turtle, automats and speaking androids.  

5 min
Hildegard Kaulen
Published on April 28, 2021

For 2,000 years we humans have wanted to build machines that look like us. For a long time, automatons were the best that contemporary engineers could produce. Humanoid robots did not emerge until 1970. Prior to that, they belonged to the world of science fiction. 

Mademoiselle Claire in 1912
Robots in industry
Robot turtle
Robots are mortal too

What about robots in modern medicine? 

By Hildegard Kaulen

Hildegard Kaulen, PhD, is a molecular biologist. Following positions at Rockefeller University in New York and Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, she now works as a freelance science journalist for newspapers and scientific magazines.