robot

noun
ro·​bot | \ ˈrō-ˌbät How to pronounce robot (audio) , -bət \
plural robots

Definition of robot

1 : a machine that resembles a living creature in being capable of moving independently (as by walking or rolling on wheels) and performing complex actions (such as grasping and moving objects) When the next space launch heads for Mars, on board will be dozens of tiny mobile robots that will fan out across the Martian landscape, exploring every nook and cranny.— Michael Bowker often : such a machine built to resemble a human being or animal in appearance and behavior While science fiction robots have been capable of independent thought, emotions, even a little cooking and sewing, scientists are finding that endowing a mechanical being with even the most basic human functions is a monumental challenge. — Greg Freiherr As a sign of the times, paleontologists themselves have taken to … designing dinosaur robots and displays … — Malcolm W. Browne often used before another noun a robot dog a robot servant — compare android, bot entry 1
2a : a device that automatically performs complicated, often repetitive tasks (as in an industrial assembly line) the use of robots in car manufacturing … factories run by robots producing many replicas of one product.— Morris Philipson often used before another noun For fluid applications, especially in the automotive industry, the robot arm must have extremely flexible movement.— Harry H. Poole
b : a mechanism guided by automatic controls a robot airplane
3 : a person who resembles a machine in seeming to function automatically or in lacking normal feelings or emotions … seems to believe that professors are robots, students are superficial, grade-hungry receptacles …— Micaela Rubalcava

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from robot

robotism \ ˈrō-​ˌbä-​ˌti-​zəm How to pronounce robot (audio) , -​bə-​ \ noun

Examples of robot in a Sentence

The cars are assembled by robots.
Recent Examples on the Web The robot vacuum is wonderfully quiet — the brand compares its noise to the sound of a microwave — and can operate across both hardwood floors and carpet. Amy Schulman, PEOPLE.com, 8 Oct. 2021 Still others, like the Peloton bike and Samsung’s JetBot robot vacuum, help with specialized tasks. Ariane Lafolie, Fortune, 1 Oct. 2021 Using a robot vacuum is easily the most convenient way to clean your floors. Nina Huang, PEOPLE.com, 17 Sep. 2021 The robot vacuum can get stuck and doesn’t learn well from the previous movements. Chris Hachey, BGR, 9 Sep. 2021 Through algorithms, the robot can see various leaf sizes and detect greenness. Elizabeth Gamillo, Smithsonian Magazine, 11 Sep. 2021 Ally Sheedy, Steve Guttenberg, and Fisher Stevens play the humans but this movie is stolen by the robot. Brian Tallerico, Vulture, 10 Sep. 2021 Gita, the $3,200 robot, is owned by AtYourGate, the company that runs the airport delivery app. Tan Vinh, Anchorage Daily News, 10 Sep. 2021 Each person at the table can order their own meal, and the robot and the server take care of the rest. Lauren M. Johnson, CNN, 7 Sep. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'robot.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of robot

1922, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for robot

Czech, from robota compulsory labor; akin to Old High German arabeit trouble, Latin orbus orphaned — more at orphan

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More About robot

Listen to Our Podcast About robot

Dictionary Entries Near robot

roborate

robot

robot bomb

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for robot

Last Updated

11 Oct 2021

Cite this Entry

“Robot.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/robot. Accessed 15 Oct. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for robot

robot

noun

English Language Learners Definition of robot

: a real or imaginary machine that is controlled by a computer and is often made to look like a human or animal
: a machine that can do the work of a person and that works automatically or is controlled by a computer

robot

noun
ro·​bot | \ ˈrō-ˌbät How to pronounce robot (audio) \

Kids Definition of robot

1 : a machine that looks and acts like a human being
2 : a machine that can do the work of a person automatically or under the control of a computer

More from Merriam-Webster on robot

Nglish: Translation of robot for Spanish Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about robot

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Dog Words Quiz

  • shiba puppy more or less demanding cuddles
  • Which of the following animals has a dog in its etymology?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!