A swarm of robots are overtaking John Deere's Horicon, Wis., plant. Sometime this year, a fleet of new-generation automated guided vehicles (AGVs) are scheduled to begin zipping through the lanes of the company's assembly line, hauling parts and materials across the plant in an efficient, automated buzz. On the face of it, there is nothing too exciting about this news. AGVs are nothing new to the market; they have been scurrying around plants in one form or another for decades ...

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