by Staff Writers
Tokyo (AFP) Sept 26, 2012
Japanese car giant Toyota on Wednesday unveiled a robotic best friend that can offer a helping hand around the house fetching and carrying for the elderly or immobile.
The human support robot, a compact cylinder-shaped machine 37 centimetres (about 15 inches) in diameter and up to 130 centimetres tall, can be remotely controlled by a tablet computer to recognise items it is sent to fetch.
Taking their cue from dogs that are trained to retrieve things, Toyota engineers designed the robot to perform simple tasks on command, using an arm equipped with a small suction pad.
"The robot still has challenges such as selecting items from a drawer containing all sorts of things, for example," said Takashi Yamamoto, general manager at Toyota's advanced technology engineering department.
"Finding an item by itself before getting it to the person controlling it is the most difficult challenge," he said.
Toyota, one of the world's biggest automakers, has applied technology developed for its cars, such as precise control of motors at high speeds, in the design of the robots.
Products catering to the elderly are big business in Japan, where a declining birthrate and lengthening life-expectancy is creating a greying society.
All about the robots on Earth and beyond!
Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.
Researchers Examine How Characteristics of Automated Voice Systems Affect Users' Experience
Washington DC (SPX) Sep 24, 2012
The personality and gender of the automated voices you hear when calling your credit card company or receiving directions from your GPS navigational system may have an unconscious effect on your perception of the technology. Human factors/ergonomics researchers have studied how the gender and tone selected for an interactive voice response system, or IVR, affects its user-friendliness and ... read more
|The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2012 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement|