In the field of robotics the latest is that of the development of an analog to our hand which resembles and works in a similar way as that of tentacles or an elephant trunk. It is said that these tentacles can grasp and grapple a wide variety of objects. Initially the robots could not do this and rely on mechanical gripping jaws. They were not good at grabbing or holding large or irregularly shaped objects.
But now these tentacle-like manipulators are more nimble and flexible. They are called Octarms as they are similar to an octopus's limb. The project called OCTOR which involved several U.S. universities and was mainly funded by the US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency. The main application is that it can investigate pipes, tunnels and other narrow spaces. The researchers predict that these robots would precisely deal with unpredictable real-world situations such as bomb disposal tasks. But further research has to be done and uncover all the possible application for these robots.