DARPA's Autonomous Robotic Manipulation (ARM) program is developing software to perform human-level tasks quickly and with minimal direction.
This video shows the ARM robot performing 18 grasping and manipulation tasks using vision, force, and tactile sensing with full autonomy no active human control. The DARPA-supplied robot was built using commercial components that include an arm, hand, neck, and head sensors.
During rigorous testing in November 2011, the best team achieved 93% success in grasping modeled and unmodeled objects. The ARM program has entered its second phase, where focus turns to complex bimanual manipulation scenarios.
Explore further: Equipois Inc sells lightweight robot arms to space human labor (w/ video)