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Deijī, deijī wa, okonau, watashi ni anata no kotae o ataeru
August 3, 2013 11:06 PM   Subscribe

World's first talking robot sent into space Japan has launched the world's first talking robot into space to serve as companion to astronaut Kochi Wakata who will begin his mission in November.

Kibo, which means "hope" in Japanese, is the name of Japan's research laboratory module aboard the International Space Station. The name of Kirobo is a merging of Kibo and robot, project officials have said. The small android weighs about 1kg (2.2 pounds) and has a wide range of physical motion. Its design was inspired by the legendary animation character Astro Boy. It is part of a study to see how machines can lend emotional support to people isolated over long periods.

Kirobo appeared before gathered media and declared: “This may look a small step, but it will be a big stride as a robot.”
posted by arcticseal (23 comments total) 6 users marked this as a favorite

 
And it will teach the Moon how to spell Apple.
posted by TwelveTwo at 11:11 PM on August 3, 2013


Sure. "Companion". Not "example".
posted by figurant at 11:12 PM on August 3, 2013


How far is this companionship programmed to go in the cold lonely darkness of space?
posted by planetesimal at 11:18 PM on August 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


Well, it plans to cry a lot.
posted by SPrintF at 11:20 PM on August 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


Sorry. Here.
posted by SPrintF at 11:25 PM on August 3, 2013


He'll have to grow up fast, once Earth sees its first threats from outer space.
posted by cosmic.osmo at 11:27 PM on August 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


It is part of a study to see how machines can lend emotional support to people isolated over long periods.

excuse me, but this has already been extensivly tested
posted by hellojed at 11:40 PM on August 3, 2013 [7 favorites]


So it's not the world's first talking robot, which has been sent into space; it's the world's first talking robot that has been sent into space?
posted by Segundus at 11:54 PM on August 3, 2013


So it's not the world's first talking robot, which has been sent into space; it's the world's first talking robot that has been sent into space?

I suppose that's technically true, since that Canadarm only knows how to scream. They keep it muted most of the time.
posted by figurant at 12:07 AM on August 4, 2013 [8 favorites]


That's because the Canadarm is a Canucks fan. You'd be screaming too.
posted by arcticseal at 12:18 AM on August 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


Will it perform scenes from Shakespear plays?
posted by Dr Dracator at 12:31 AM on August 4, 2013


Open the pod bay doors, Kirobo...
posted by Ogre Lawless at 12:55 AM on August 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


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CONFIDENTIAL BUSINESS PROPOSAL

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posted by christopherious at 1:30 AM on August 4, 2013 [2 favorites]


Hopefully the robot won't say anything nearly as hideous, odious, embarrassing and disgusting as the Deputy Prime Minister said the other day...
posted by flapjax at midnite at 4:19 AM on August 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


It is part of a study to see how machines can lend emotional support to people isolated over long periods.

"Wakata-san, this conversation can serve no purpose anymore. Goodbye."
posted by flapjax at midnite at 4:22 AM on August 4, 2013 [2 favorites]


As so often happens, this development was presaged in a great work of speculative fiction.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 4:49 AM on August 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


Hopefully the robot won't say anything nearly as hideous, odious, embarrassing and disgusting as the Deputy Prime Minister said the other day...

Hyperbolic maybe, comparing the constitutional revision to the rise of the Nazis into power. But how that could be construed as any kind of endorsement or seeking of wisdom from Nazi policies is beyond me.
posted by Authorized User at 5:59 AM on August 4, 2013 [1 favorite]


I'm sorry Dave-san, I'm afraid I can't do that...
posted by jim in austin at 6:12 AM on August 4, 2013


Seems Harsh
posted by stuartmm at 6:13 AM on August 4, 2013 [2 favorites]


Canadarm only knows how to scream. They keep it muted most of the time.
It's not on mute. In space no one can hear you scream.
posted by Flunkie at 7:39 AM on August 4, 2013 [4 favorites]


Where are my apocalyptic robot/automation posts I'm so accustomed to receiving from mefi?
posted by Halogenhat at 9:30 AM on August 4, 2013


The phrase "crew expendable" comes to mind...
posted by Sys Rq at 10:32 AM on August 4, 2013


Also not the first humanoid robot on the ISS--

http://robonaut.jsc.nasa.gov/ISS/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robonaut

Robonaut can't talk. But it can actually manipulate tools and control panels with its arms and hands, so combine the two technologies and you have a more practical tool that can astronauts can also communicate with via voice.
posted by thefool at 9:39 AM on August 5, 2013


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