The term ""robot"" usually conjures up a picture of monsters and murder. But in actuality, they are only man-made machines designed to perform complicated tasks. In this history of robotry, young readers will be surprised to learn that robots first made an appearance in 150 BC when Hero of Alexandria created his startling ""man"". Before the full surge of the Industrial Revolution, intricate robot clocks existed and a musical robot girl entertained on the harpsichord. The use of robots in practical and vital areas reached serious proportions in World War II and continues through the present. ""Brain"" computers, special satellites and space machines are the robots of today, working for man's technical progress. This is competent and informative fare -- a pleasant antidote to a steady diet of science fiction.