Isaac Asimov inspired roboticists with his science fiction and especially his robot laws. The first one says:
A robot may not injure a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm.
Artist and roboticist Alexander Reben has designed a robot that purposefully defies that law.
"It hurts a person and it injures them," Reben says. His robot pricks fingers, hurting "in the most minimal way possible," he says.