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A laboratory robot called Adam has been hailed as the first machine in history to have discovered new scientific knowledge independently of its human creators.
Adam formed a hypothesis on the genetics of bakers’ yeast and carried out experiments to test its predictions, without intervention from its makers at Aberystwyth University.
The result was a series of “simple but useful” discoveries, confirmed by human scientists, about the gene coding for yeast enzymes. The research is published in the journal Science.
Professor Ross King, the chief creator of Adam, said robots would not supplant human researchers but make their work more productive and interesting.