How many robots does it take to open a door? If the robots are trying to figure out how to do the task from scratch, then it helps to have as many as possible involved.

In three separate research papers posted online Monday, researchers at Google and other Alphabet subsidiaries showed several ways in which robots can learn to perform simple tasks more quickly by sharing different types of learning experiences.

The researchers are training teams of industrial robots to perform simple tasks using a technique called reinforcement learning, which combines trial and error with positive feedback. For the moment, these tasks are extremely simple, like opening doors or nudging objects around. But such advances will be crucial if robots are ever going to be capable of helping with everyday chores like folding the laundry or doing the dishes.

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