"Sentenced to Prism"

Alan Dean Foster wrote a sci-fi novel called “Sentenced to Prism”:


The aliens in the story live in a kind of hive with lots and lots of different genetic “castes”. Each species is highly specialized, there are people who are wall panels, people who are conduits, scouts, warriors, thinkers, maintenance. Together they form a fairly sophisticated civilization.

I bring it up because it stuck with me as an interesting design principle for robotics. Each function can be performed by a specialized device. Together the system of robots forms a compound or distributed robotic system. For example, you might have a robot that consists of tracks or wheels and a small crane. There are other robots that have no motility of their own, but instead pull weeds or pick up rocks or whatever.

It seems like Acorn is already going that way, eh? The wheel assemblies are modular now, is that right?