It sounds ripped from the pages of scyence fyction, but a robot named Adam could be the world's first automated scientist. Developed by Aberystwyth University in the UK, Adam is capable of performing 1,000 experiments in a day as it toils to identify genes in yeast cells, and even plan future experiments to test its results. As for its progress, it's already identified 12 genes out of 6,000, which Adam hunted down by observing their growth. It then plugs in the behavior of the known genes to try and predict the unknown ones.
While that's all super impressive, the work that Adam does in the lab won't empty it of scientists just yet — maybe just interns. "If you spent all of the money we've spent on Adam on employing human biologists," Ross King, a professor at the department of computer science at Aberystwyth, told the BBC. "Adam probably wouldn't turn out to be the cost-effective option." The cost to research, purchase and maintain a robot such as Adam is still vastly more expensive than the cheap coffee and hatred that bankrolls an intern.