Robotics is the science and technology of designing, building and using industrial and service robots. Industrial robots were first used on a production line in 1962. Today, they are more than one million in number, the principal applications being welding, assembly, handling, machining, paint-spraying and gluing. The 1980s witnessed the first uses of robots outside the area of industrial production, particularly in applications in which the respective task could not be executed manually because it was unacceptable or too dangerous for a human to perform or because the required accuracy and/or force could not be achieved by manual means. Robots of this type are known as service robots. Nowadays, service robots are at work cleaning buildings and roads or monitoring public areas, such as museums. Ever more robots are being used to carry out hazardous maintenance and inspection operations in industry, local authorities and the energy sector. At the personal and domestic level, robots are increasingly finding applications as robot vacuum cleaners, automated lawnmowers and toy robots. These personal robots may be early examples of future systems which will do useful jobs and assist humans in everyday environments.