In a robotic system for efficient serialization of processing a number of samples by a robotic manipulator through an identical sequence of processing steps with a plurality of the samples being processed through the sequence at a given time, such that they must share the services of the manipulator, the improvement wherein a computer control means 92 operates a schedule-control feature which forms means both (a) to relate (1) the time within said sequence required to carry out all said steps which do not require the robotic manipulator (22) to (2) the time within said sequence which does require the robotic manipulator and the minimum number of processing spaces (305) for samples in non-robotic-manipulated time steps; and (b) to provide a priority of action for manipulator such that the sample which is both ready for further processing and most advanced in the sequence is given priority for further completion when said manipulator (22) is available for said further processing.
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