The automatons of the galaxy, droids are typically fashioned in the likenesses of their creators or in a utilitarian design that stresses function over appearance. Droids are equipped with artificial intelligence, though some are naturally created smarter than others depending on the function they are designed to serve. Many droids are programmed to understand Basic or the native language of their masters. Only those whose function is to regularly interact with organic beings are provided with a speech synthesizer. All others communicate via a program language that is unintelligible to most organic beings. (Some people who spend a lot of time working with or around droids do pick up the language--at least well enough to understand some of it.) Power is provided by rechargeable cells stored within a droid's body. Many organic cultures, including the Empire, treat droids as property or slaves, and many public areas are considered off-limits to droids.
There are five droid classifications, each assigned according to a particular droid's primary function. First-degree droids are skilled in physical, mathematical, and medical sciences. Second-degree droids are programmed in engineering and technical sciences. The social sciences and service areas (such as translation, spaceport control, diplomatic assistance, and tutoring) are the domain of third-degree droids. Fourth- degree droids are skilled in security and military applications. Menial labor and non-intelligence-intensive jobs (such as mining, salvage, transportation, and sanitation) are handled by fifth-degree droids. Most droids, regardless of their classification, have the capabilities of locomotion, logic, self-aware intelligence, communication, manipulation, and sensory reception.