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This is from a news article :

The robots, which have been patrolling the airport since April, are meant to “project additional police presence” and serve as extra “eyes on the ground,” according to the force, which describes them as the latest addition to its “technological arsenal.”

I looked up the verb 'project' in the OLD.

  1. to plan an activity, a project etc. for a time in the future

  2. to present somebody/something/yourself to other people in a particular way, especially one that gives a good impression

I think robots can't plan an activity or a project so 'project' seems to mean 'to present something to other people in a particular way'.

Am I wrong?

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    Have you checked other dictionaries? I don't think the OLD definitions are very good in this case. Merriam-Webster includes "to throw or cast forward : thrust", which seems more applicable.
    – stangdon
    Jun 19, 2023 at 2:48
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    @stangdon You mean 'project (= thrust)' figuratively means 'To extend (a protrusion or appendage) outward'. Am I right?
    – user157844
    Jun 19, 2023 at 3:01
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    The definitions in the question aren't very good. "Projecting an image" is normally a bit more forceful than "presenting an image" - it's not literally thrusting out, but it implies active effort and outward engagement, while "present" can be essentially passive.
    – Stuart F
    Jun 19, 2023 at 13:10
  • @StuartF Thank you very much.
    – user157844
    Jun 19, 2023 at 13:31
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    @ellse Yes, I think that the robots metaphorically extend police presence.
    – stangdon
    Jun 19, 2023 at 13:40

2 Answers 2

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You are correct. The article is using “project” in the sense of trying to present something. The robots are being used to create an impression of enhanced police presence.

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  • Thank you very much.
    – user157844
    Jun 19, 2023 at 7:03
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The word may be used in the sense of "projection", as in power or force projection, that is a term used in military and political science to refer to the capacity of a state to deploy and sustain forces outside its territory.

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  • Thank you very much.
    – user157844
    Jun 19, 2023 at 9:30

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