PARO
December 28, 2006 8:30 PM   Subscribe

PARO: Seal Type Mental Commit Robot for Psychological Enrichment.
posted by gottabefunky (18 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite

 
i can't wait till they start using these to sell coke...
posted by es_de_bah at 8:40 PM on December 28, 2006


Needs an "Engrish" tag.
posted by BeerFilter at 8:46 PM on December 28, 2006


Maybe giving a Mental Commit Robot as a gift would send the wrong message ...
posted by krinklyfig at 8:51 PM on December 28, 2006


PARO!
APPLY DIRECTLY TO THE FOREHEAD!
PARO!
APPLY DIRECTLY TO THE FOREHEAD!
Paro Seal Type Mental Commit Robot is available without a prescription at retailers nationwide.
posted by Chrischris at 9:05 PM on December 28, 2006


This thread is useless without a Canadian hunter robot.
posted by rob511 at 9:19 PM on December 28, 2006


* Not available in Norway
posted by Artw at 9:27 PM on December 28, 2006


I'll choose not to snark and comment instead on the increasing dependence of the Japanese on robots. They have a sizable population about to enter retirement and not enough young people to act as caregivers. Their turning to robots to fill this niche. On the one hand, how cool is it that they are working this hard (Honda's Asimo, Sony's QRIOand AIBO ) on robots to protect and care for them? That's some Asimov shit right there.

On the other hand, how sad is it, that these elderly people will eventually turn to fur covered machines as a way of finding some connection with the world. I just can't get over the idea that it's tantamount to sticking grandma in a nursing home and giving her a Furby for company.

Which is to say, I think I'm going to like the concept, but hate this practice.
posted by quin at 10:05 PM on December 28, 2006


Anybody else want to club this thing?
posted by christopher.taylor at 10:11 PM on December 28, 2006


I'd rather sweet elderly Japanese pensioners get simulated, fuzzy robot love than no love at all, wouldn't you?

It would be nice if you could remotely control these, maybe wag your tail at Grandma once in a while when you're away. But you know grandmothers; it'll be all "you never write, you never call, you never telepresently wag your tail at me..."

and by "wagging your tail at grandma", i mean in a cute, friendly furry seal telerobotic way and in no other sense
posted by phooky at 10:17 PM on December 28, 2006


Paro's reliability and durability have been improved through long-term experimentation, such as the drop test and the stroking test, during which the tactile sensor is stimulated more than 100,000 times.

Oh my god.
posted by phooky at 10:19 PM on December 28, 2006


Wrong. According to the Cyborg name generator, which is authoritative on such matters, PARO is "Positronic Artificial Repair Organism."
posted by blenderfish at 10:39 PM on December 28, 2006


The Japanese will do a booming business in robotic elder care in the USA, once those baby boomers get grey.

I'm predicting the West is going to be wiped out in the next depression. The money is all heading East, the land is going to come free as the hordes upon hordes of Boomers die, Gen-X, Y, and Z are going to all end up in service jobs, and Chinese businessmen purchase North America.
posted by five fresh fish at 11:23 PM on December 28, 2006


You can't club the white ones.
posted by BeerFilter at 5:02 AM on December 29, 2006


Surely I'm not the only one who initially pictured a little armed-to-the-teeth Navy Seal robot, similar to the villianous toys in Small Soldiers?

Anyone?
posted by John Smallberries at 9:45 AM on December 29, 2006


quin: On the other hand, how sad is it, that these elderly people will eventually turn to fur covered machines as a way of finding some connection with the world.

If they want to keep their current standard of living, Japan needs workers. This essentially leaves them with a choice between an immigrant society (a la the US) or a robotic society. From the Japanese point of view, the latter isn't sad at all -- it's much more in keeping with Japanese culture and history than the former. Robots who are designed to speak Japanese and act Japanese make more sense for a homogeneous society like Japan than Indonesian or Chinese workers. Foreigners won't be able to integrate for some generations, and aren't likely to be perceived as Japanese even then, but robots are easily accepted.
posted by vorfeed at 2:37 PM on December 29, 2006


When you club your seals,
Do you club the white ones last?
Do you whack them very slowly,
Or smash them very fast?
Beat that furry-coated meatsack,
But tell me when I ask,
When you club your seals,
Do you club the white ones last?
posted by five fresh fish at 6:36 PM on December 29, 2006


Come to think of it, that song might be recognized only by Canadians, possibly by Brits. I don't think Americans know the joy of Smarties.
posted by five fresh fish at 6:37 PM on December 29, 2006


five fresh fish: An Australian guy I know has a Smarties t-shirt; I asked him about it, and he tried to explain, but I quickly got the impression that it was the sort of thing you can't really explain.
posted by blenderfish at 7:21 PM on December 30, 2006


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