Reading comprehension test 307

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Reading comprehension questions answers for competitive exam

Question 1 [CLICK ON ANY CHOICE TO KNOW THE RIGHT ANSWER]
The contemporary industrial robot, in the eyes of politicians and others, may wear the halo of high technology, but it came into being to meet a rather mundane need. In the booming labour market the early 1960s, it became increasingly difficult to find people willing to do boring, repetitive and unpleasant jobs. What was needed was not a machine which could master elaborate human skills, but one which could provide the mindless lumpen proletariat demanded by mass production. What had to be learnt, and proved well within the robot's capacity, were sequences of precise movement of the arm and hand. Such sequences were relatively easily programmed into a computer memory, especially after the advent of the microprocessor freed robots from their dependence on the mainframe computers of the 1960s. But however impressive, even uncanny, a robot may appear to the layman as it repeats a series of movements with flawless precision, it is, in fact, operating blindly and by rote. Repetitive manipulation is, of course, a skill common to many machines: what differentiates the robot is that it makes use of an articulated arm analogous to the human limb and that it can be reprogrammed to perform a whole variety of tasks without the need to redesign, or adjust its mechanical components. There are however, a limited range of applications, in which manipulator arm, operating blindly and without intelligence, is useful. Looking through manufacturers' catalogues one is struck not by the machine's versatility but by the monotonous repetition of a sort of litany of robot functions: machine tool loading and unloading, spot welding, paint spraying and parts transfer being the commonest.

Whatever its task, a robot is dependent for its effectiveness upon a whole supporting cast of automated machines. Everything must be presented to it in consistent positions and orientations; it can only operate in a world of guaranteed predictability. Indeed, to consider robots in isolation from automation, in general, is rather like studying an ant which has been removed from an anthill - an ingenious but purposeless curiosity. The need to provide an automated environment has so far restricted robot use to large scale industry businesses such as specialist machine shops, producing small batches of many different items have little incentive to set up the paraphernalia of conveyors, jigs and electronic communication, which a robot requires.

The passage makes it clear that, contrary to popular opinion, robots:

A
were designed to replace human labour
B
work with flawless perfection and creativity.
C
can only operate in a system where everything is inconsistent and unpredictable
D
cannot be classified as high technology
Question 1 Explanation: 
The answer can be found in first two lines of the passage. Robots may wear the halo of high technology, as per the popular opinion but they came into being to meet a rather mundane need - that is to replace humans in work which required repetitive, boring and mundane tasks.
Question 2 [CLICK ON ANY CHOICE TO KNOW THE RIGHT ANSWER]
The robots have been restricted to a large scale industry businesses only because:
A
they can operate only in a world of guaranteed predictability and automated environment
B
they can provide the mindless lumpen proletariat demanded by mass production.
C
they are expensive and high technology machines
D
they can replace human beings in any type of work
Question 2 Explanation: 
The answer can be found in lines: "the need to provide an automated environment has so far restricted robot use to large scale industry businesses''.
Question 3 [CLICK ON ANY CHOICE TO KNOW THE RIGHT ANSWER]
Robots differ from other machines in that:
A
they react like human beings
B
they need little maintenance
C
they have a limited number of applications
D
they are easy to switch from task to task
Question 3 Explanation: 
According to the passage, robots can only work in an automated environment that guarantees predictability and have limited number of applications. So the answer is option C); the other options are factually incorrect.
There are 3 questions to complete.

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