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Meet the Soft Robots Doing the Hard Jobs of the Future

WSJ’s The Future of Everything

18-08-2023 • 25 mins

When you think of a robot, what comes to mind? A big metal arm in a car factory? A shiny android like C3PO from “Star Wars”? What about a robot that’s soft, floppy and looks a little more like the hot dog fingers from “Everything Everywhere, All at Once”? Soft robots are engineered for more delicate tasks that used to require a human touch – like handling food or conducting tests inside our bodies. But for now, they’re isolated to specific fields, like manufacturing and medicine, and haven’t really made their way into the daily lives of most people. WSJ’s Alex Ossola looks into what it will take to bring soft robots out of the factory and hospital and into our homes.  Further reading:  Robots Are Learning to Handle With Care   Robots Are Looking to Bring a Human Touch to Warehouses  What Picking Up an Apple Tells You About the Future of Robotics   First Autonomous, Entirely Soft Robot Developed  Amid the Labor Shortage, Robots Step in to Make the French Fries  The Quest for a Robot With a Sense of Touch  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit