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"But the problem with reincarnation is that it's hard to imagine what the storage medium for past lives would be. Not to mention the input-output device. I hesitate to rule it out completely, but I'd need pretty definite proof."
- Arthur C. Clarke

Robot Surgeon  
  An autonomous robotic surgeon.  

Facing him from behind the desk was the surgeon The nameplate on the desk included a fully identifying series of letters and numbers which Andrew didn't bother with. To call him Doctor would be quite enough.

"When can the operation be carried through, Doctor?" he asked. Softly, with that certain inalienable note of respect that a robot always used to a human being, the surgeon said, "I am not certain, sir, that I understand how or upon whom such an operation could be performed."

There might have been a look of respectful intransigence on the surgeon's face, if a robot of his sort, in lightly bronzed stainless steel, could have such an expression - or any expression. Andrew Martin studied the robot's right hand, his cutting hand, as it lay motionless on the desk. The fingers were long and were shaped into artistically metallic, looping curves so -graceful and appropriate that one could imagine a scalpel fitting them and becoming, temporarily, one piece with them. There would be no hesitation in his work, no stumbling, no quivering, no mistakes. That confidence came with specialization, of course, a specialization so fiercely desired by humanity that few robots were, any longer, independently brained. A surgeon, of course, would have to be.

From The Bicentennial Man, by Isaac Asimov.
Published by Unknown in 1976
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  More Ideas and Technology from The Bicentennial Man
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Robot Surgeon-related news articles:
  - Robot Surgeons To Be Fully Autonomous
  - Best Surgeon? The Smart Tissue Autonomous Robot

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