Battlefield robots
Credit: Geoff Caddick / AFP / Getty Images

Wonder where all the remote-controlled robots have gone? Look in Iraq. The first shipment of Dragon Runners, developed by researchers at Carnegie Mellon University, went out in June 2013. Their mission is to save soldiers' lives by scouting treacherous urban nooks and crannies. And that's just the start. The Dragon Runner is simply a crude version of what scientists say battlefield robots will one day become. When perfected and tossed into action, milllibots small robots with extensive functionality) will self-deploy according to their assigned tasks, yet they will continue to work as a team – like a miniature, mechanical Force 10 from Navarone. If one becomes disabled or separated from the rest, the others can even rescue it.