Sunday, 8 February 2015

Spooky tech

I wonder why they make these humanoid gadgets? Maybe it is mainly intended to promote Toshiba tech, but I don't think it works particularly well. Too weird, too spooky and not as impressive as the technology probably warrants.


Sam Vega said...

I think she is a well-known resident of "Uncanny Valley".

I was about to make the unkind remark that she compares reasonably well with the Toshiba employees who introduce and comment on her, but then a more serious thought occurred to me. In oriental societies where there is huge emphasis on "fitting in" socially by means of scrupulous observance of small social rituals, such humanoids are probably a good deal more impressive. Here in the west, we are more interested in "character" and standing out by means of quirky expression.

Rumour has it that the UK Liberal Party is funding research for a male version to be released shortly after May 7th 2015. Apparently the last version has been working for some years in a secret location, but the party are not happy with its performance and he is due to be scrapped.

Roger said...

Just wheels & wires. I do find the focus on gesture a bit pukey. Of more interest is Watson, once its successors are hooked up to Ms Automaton we may start to worry. Will robots ever have a private part? - and I don't mean that sort!

James Higham said...

Not to speak of what it would do for the blow up doll trade.

A K Haart said...

Sam - maybe the Lib Dem version is also a resident of Uncanny Valley, yet the aversion seems more constant to me. All dip and no rise.

Roger - yes Watson is more interesting, although with an android interface maybe anything is possible.

James - I wonder how many men watch the video without that thought passing through their minds (:

Edward Spalton said...

Japan is a country which has preserved its national homogeneity and will not accept mass immigration. It's population is in quite steep decline ergo......

They did something similar with factory automation years ago. Whilst Britain was importing large numbers of people to keep wages down, Japan was automating and using factory robots.

The Japanese economy is said to be in the doldrums yet productivity per worker has increased phenomenally of recent years although GDP a is stagnant.

Now which would you rather live in. - a country of declining population with high income per person or an expanding low wage economy with higher GDP, crowded with low paid immigrant workers?

A K Haart said...

Edward - I think the Japanese know how to plan long term and have been aware of demographic inevitability for decades.

Ultimately I believe they expect their elderly to be cared for in part by robots rather than low wage immigrants.