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In Japan, Old People Talk to Robots

samzenpus posted more than 9 years ago | from the just-visit-your-grandmother dept.

Robotics 352

stupidfoo writes "AFP is reporting that, starting today, "Japan's growing elderly population will be able to buy companionship in the form of a 45-centimeter (18-inch) robot" designed to help them avoid senility. The robot, named Snuggling Ifbot and developed by Dream Supply, will be able to respond to verbal commands. "If a person tells Snuggling Ifbot, "I'm bored today," the robot might respond, "Are you bored? What do you want to do?"". It retails for 576,000 yen (5,600 dollars) and there is no English version currently available but "its makers plan to program the robot in English -- not for export, but to teach the language to Japanese children.""

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and in Korean (2, Funny)

essreenim (647659) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972741)

...old people use e-mail!! (and are haxors)

Re:and in Korean (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10972796)

Yes, but is WILDCAT ON|TEH SP0KE in JP | KO
?

Huh?

Re:and in Korean (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10972833)

|\
u |-\re s1ckness. b1-|-C)-(.
| \

Same as Korea! (-1)

tod_miller (792541) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972745)

designed to help them avoid senility

Some would argue that the purchase of such a robot would actually argue the case for senile dementia.

oh right then:

In Korea, Only Old People Talk About Robots...

You happy now? Are you?

...in Japan! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10972765)

In Soviet Russia, insensitive clods YOU!

No! No! No! (-1, Redundant)

TuringTest (533084) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972785)

Old people, Japan and 18-inch jokes all in the same story! I won't survive it!

See a pattern here? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10972808)



L := country_in_asian_continet
G := any_computer/software-related-action

Next Story: In %L old people %G

News for Nerds interested in old people.

Well, With the reports that the IT industry will shrink 50% and that the Medicare/Healthcare/BabyBoom Sector will expand 67% in the next 2 decades.... I'd say Slashdot is getting a early head start.

Re:Same as Korea! (-1, Redundant)

themaidtricks (823827) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972843)

I'll never be happy until you change the phrasing...

In tech savvy Japan, conversing with robots is for the elderly.

Re:Same as Korea! (-1)

otisaardvark (587437) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972855)

Where else but Japan would you be able to find a Thanks Tail [petworks.co.jp] for your car, letting you wag your car's tail like a dog when someone lets you change lane? You can watch the advert here [petworks.co.jp] . Try the Coral cache [nyud.net] first.

Re:Same as Korea! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10972919)

Now I understand those "In Japan!" jokes! 8-O

Re:Same as Korea! (-1)

Carthag (643047) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972902)

I'm interested in learning how the robot will help anyone avoid old age. Maybe it kills them?

Re:Same as Korea! (-1)

B1ackDragon (543470) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972965)

Is it just me, or did this meme seem to spring up almost overnight, like a week ago? Was it while I was away for Thanksgiving?

Further, what is the deal with it? Unless I am missing something (which I hope I am) this is the dumbest recurring joke I've seen on slashdot, after the trolls I mean. Where'd it come from?

Re:Same as Korea! (-1, Offtopic)

DigitumDei (578031) | more than 9 years ago | (#10973009)

Two days ago I believe. Here [slashdot.org]
Its all this guys [slashdot.org] fault...

This is how the Matrix got started (-1)

My Iron Lung (834019) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972746)

I, for one, welcome our new talking robot overlords. Viva la revolution!

Re:This is how the Matrix got started (0)

LaimGod (757950) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972854)

Ahem, they are our new miniature talking robot overlords. you left out the miniature part, you insensitive clod! The overlord would be most displeased

How to react? (5, Funny)

kahei (466208) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972747)


Should I:

a) Weep for the millions of human tragedies that must have taken place to lead so many to this extreme of loneliness and general patheticness, or...

b) Laugh because it's called 'Snuggling Ifbot'?

Eh, I'll go for b). Hee hee hee... 'snuggling ifbot'... hee hee hee...

Not very large (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10972748)

How will it push anyone down the stairs?

Re:Not very large (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10972898)

Alone or in pairs?

Re:Not very large (4, Informative)

ZaMoose (24734) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972946)

It's not often that The Terrible Secret of Space [jonathonrobinson.com] gets made into a joke on /. Bravo, AC!

Everyone else, beware of the Pusher Robot, he is not to be trusted. I, the Shover Robot am here to save you!

Re:Not very large (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10973017)

Ha - I did a PAK CHOOIE UNF comment just last week on a story... came too late to be noticed though.

Re: Not very large (1)

Alwin Henseler (640539) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972967)

"How will it push anyone down the stairs?"

Simple: just program it to pick a strategic location. What's this rubble doing he....$#!*&@^

Too bad she won't live... But then again, who does?

Re:Not very large (0)

CdXiminez (807199) | more than 9 years ago | (#10973005)

Nonono, humans should be shoved down the stairs.

rather than forcing it to use it's AI for conversa (2, Interesting)

way2trivial (601132) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972749)

tion, why not use the thing as a giant physical IM client? when you speak to it, have it relay whatever it hears to one of it's soon to be overlord cousins, kinda at random..

sure makes it easier to pass a turing test...

Sounds familiar... (5, Funny)

koi88 (640490) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972750)


Sounds like a 5600$ version of Eliza.

Re:Sounds familiar... (4, Funny)

c0dedude (587568) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972794)

Why does it sound like a 5600$ version of Eliza?

Re:Sounds familiar... (3, Funny)

Zorilla (791636) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972826)

Haha, by far the funniest line I've ever heard in Dr. Sbaitso is when my brother typed in, "I CAN THROW POOP"

Dr. Sbaitso: "CAN YOU THROW POOP FOR ME NOW?"

Re:Sounds familiar... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10972977)

This [img55.exs.cx] Eliza?

Re:Sounds familiar... (1)

Burb (620144) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972999)

Please tell me more...

Re:Sounds familiar... (2, Funny)

TuringTest (533084) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972802)

Can you elaborate on that?

Re:Sounds familiar... (1)

Black Handle (836084) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972844)

ALICE = Artificial Linguistic Internet Computer Entity http://alice.pandorabots.com/ [pandorabots.com]

Re:Sounds familiar... (1)

TuringTest (533084) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972937)

Um, Tell me your definition of AI.

Re:Sounds familiar... (1)

ocelotbob (173602) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972953)

dude, the sound that joke made when it whizzed over your head was kinda cool. Play with eliza a bit and you will soon forehead fwap with enlightenment.

Re:Sounds familiar... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10972929)

If I had mod points right now, you'd get modded up.

Re:Sounds familiar... (2, Funny)

TuringTest (533084) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972945)

Do you wish that you had mod points right now youd get modded up?

In Korea (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10972751)

Only old people use robots.

The correct meme construction is... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10972890)

In Korea, only robots talk to old people.

Or, contrary to the title, "Robots speak with old people... In Japan."

The venerable, "In Soviet Russia, tell you what to do."

The popular, "I for one welcome our new engrish speaking, machine gun wielding, robot overloards."

The itemized, "Phase one: Arm robots with machine guns and rocket launchers. Phase two: ??? Phase three: Take care of old people."

Which leads me to conclude, "You must be new here."

Snuggling Ifbot? (5, Funny)

deletedaccount (835797) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972752)

Great name to go senile with. That's the kind of name I want around when I'm 85 and dribbling, "you seen the snuggling ifbot today son?"

Japanese individuals (1)

0x54524F4C4C (712971) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972753)



are Crystal Meth [urban75.com] addicts [tinyurl.com]

I am not a doctor (2, Insightful)

nick korma (836538) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972754)

but how could this possibly be used to combat the onset of senility?? I can understand how the robot could be used to teach children or adults another language but old people telling the ipod that they are bored will not do anything to stop them forgetting where they live or where they left the car...

Re:I am not a doctor (5, Insightful)

Max Romantschuk (132276) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972777)

but how could this possibly be used to combat the onset of senility?

Studies have shown that passively sitting around not talking to anyone all day doesn't exactly help your brain keep in shape. (You have to exercise it, you know? Seriously.)

Re:I am not a doctor (5, Funny)

nick korma (836538) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972787)

in which case I really need to move out of my nice quiet server room and interact with the rest of my office - before one day ............ where am I... why have I got no pants on...

Re:I am not a doctor (0, Offtopic)

TFGeditor (737839) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972993)

Or... ...who am I? Why do I have no mod points?

Re:I am not a doctor (4, Funny)

Zentac (804805) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972786)

I am no doctor ether, but I'm aware of the general asumption, with medical proof wich I am not femilliar with, that you can train the brain and that keeping it busy will help not getting senile

hahaha what a laugh if... (1, Interesting)

tod_miller (792541) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972761)

We hacked tham all to convince them they are mad, and to place all thier assets in our care!

Ooops, scarey thought, what if someone actually did this? Robo identities with an ulterior motive!

What if someone goes senile, and leaves all thier assets to the robot?

Come to think of it, why did I think this was funny... more like insightful!

*adjust ancient-korean tinfoil hat*

Re:hahaha what a laugh if... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10972856)

Not that I'm the original poster or anything, but what's offtopic about this?

Re:hahaha what a laugh if... (1)

TFGeditor (737839) | more than 9 years ago | (#10973006)

Agreed.

Hmm online access is fun (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10972992)

I can't imagine them being online though. But yeah leaving all of their possessions, come on robot rights.

But in Korea They email Them (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10972762)

With reference to this story


Moderate this comment
Negative: Offtopic [mithuro.com] Flamebait [mithuro.com] Troll [mithuro.com] Redundant [mithuro.com]
Positive: Insightful [mithuro.com] Interesting [mithuro.com] Informative [mithuro.com] Funny [mithuro.com]

I envisioned this way back (2, Insightful)

Max Romantschuk (132276) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972764)

I decided way back that if technology allowed I'd want a virtual persona (themed like "Jeeves" in the English TV series) to keep track of things for me.

I'd love to be able to just look at any screen in the appartment and ask what I was supposed to do today, ask if there are any interesting news etc. A computer won't get bored with you asking for the nth time, and can alert someone if you don't take your medicine. If technology allows, why burden our children? They can come over to visit instead of taking care of you.

I'm not sure I'd want a robot though. Face-in-the-TV is more my style. Think Max Headroom, only with class ;)

Re:I envisioned this way back (1)

RealProgrammer (723725) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972922)

  • If technology allows, why burden our children?

Because they deserve it, the sniveling little ingrates!

In Japan... (5, Funny)

tintub (733763) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972771)

In Japan, sanity is talking to a robot called Snuggly Ifbot :-/

Re:In Japan... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10972889)

That would be "In Imperial Japan" to you, sir.. :)

In Japan... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10972773)

... only old peoples robots email YOU!

Like talking to Eliza? (2, Funny)

tod_miller (792541) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972780)

Why am I alone?

Why do you think you are alone?

Yes, but you are not alive though are you?

What makes you think that?

You are alive? OMG, what did they do to you?

Tell me more about why you think you are alone.

But you just said you are alive.

What makes you think I just said I was alive?

AAAAAaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaargh.

Lets watch tv and have some fun!

Re:Like talking to Eliza? (1)

julesh (229690) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972911)

How about a nice game of chess?

Guys you have it all wrong! (1, Funny)

Agret (752467) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972782)

You guys wrote:
In Japan, Old People Talk to Robots

No it's supposed to be:

In Japan ONLY Old People Talk to Robots

Kids these days can't even get the joke right!

Re:Guys you have it all wrong! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10972850)

No, that would be in Korea. In Japan, where tech is way ahead of ours, old people are leading the way ... by talking to robots instead of bothering everyone else.

Re:Guys you have it all wrong! (0, Offtopic)

earthman (12244) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972924)

I think it should be 'In Japan, Only Robots Talk to Old People'

Great. (2, Interesting)

CosmeticLobotamy (155360) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972790)

"If a person tells Snuggling Ifbot, "I'm bored today," the robot might respond, "Are you bored? What do you want to do?"

Whew. Thanks, Ifbot. You solved that problem. I don't know what I would have done without you.

Re:Great. (2, Interesting)

metlin (258108) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972822)

Funny, after watching Ghost in the Shell: Innocence, am not too sure about what people would do with these kinda robots.

On one hand, it's sad that people need robots to talk to, rather than each other. On the other hand, this is eerily reminiscent of Solaria in Asimov's books.

Oh wait, wasn't Solaria itself modeled on the Emperor-ruled Japan? Looks like some cultural influences never leave, they merely come to haunt the people in different disguises.

Re: Just wait (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10972827)

Just wait until they upgrade their robots to put on machine guns like those other bots.

Then you better hope those old people don't say things like "Im bored", or there will be hell to pay.

And in the rest of the world (1, Funny)

mikeage (119105) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972792)

In Soviet Russia, robots talk to old people
In Japan, old people talk to robots
In Korea, only the old people talk to robots.

I guess that means the English childrens version won't do so well in Korea...

Re:And in the rest of the world (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10972834)

Should it not be: In Soviet Russia the old people talk to YOU!

Re:And in the rest of the world (0, Offtopic)

mikeage (119105) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972908)

See this brings up an interesting point.
The normal joke is:
Instead of "you ", we have " you"

But what if the subject is not you? Do you replace " " with " " or is it always " YOU"?

Ok, ok, back to work...

Re:And in the rest of the world (1)

mikeage (119105) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972928)

please ignore this post. The formatting was totally mangled, and I don't feel like rewriting it...

Re:And in the rest of the world (0, Offtopic)

91degrees (207121) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972874)

In Soviet Russia, the dead horse flogs YOU.

Re:And in the rest of the world (1)

trash eighty (457611) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972944)

shouldn't that be

In Korea, only old people email robots?

Interesting phrases (1)

Viper233 (132365) | more than 9 years ago | (#10973023)

I wonder if one of the translated phrases out of it will be something along the lines of
"All your base are belong to us"

Hmmm, that's just about all Internet fads ... now all we need is it to play a video of the starwar's kid and get it to say

badger, badger, badger, badger, badger, .......

Diamond Age... (1)

Jaruzel (804522) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972801)

"its makers plan to program the robot in English -- not for export, but to teach the language to Japanese children."

Reminds me somewhat of the Young Ladies Illustrated Primer, from Diamond Age, and we all know how that turned out (the mouse army).

Japans "CareBots"... (4, Interesting)

DoktorTomoe (643004) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972811)

Having done some research (I hold a masters degree in Japanese), I recall there was also a project that had some kid of one-button Instant Messenger in a teddy bear.

The Idea was that elders spoke to the teddy, who tried to convert their word to written language. This was transferred to a central station, where social workers read them on monitor, and replied (e.g. answering questions). The teddy-bot then "spoke the answer to the elder.

Dont know if this project still is in progress. However, an old lady mentioned that the positive impact of the robot was that so much researchers and journalists came to visit her these days...

What is the deal with the Japanese? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10972813)

I'm no cultural anthropologist, but something must be seriously fucked up with a nation that produces millions of locked-away teenagers, unending streams of paedophilic tentacle rape comics and expensive robots to keep its elderly people sane. Say what you want about the bloated corpulence of USofAia, but I'd take physical problems over crippling psychological problems and abandonment of the elderly.

In korea ... (-1)

El_Muerte_TDS (592157) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972814)

In korea talking to robots is for old people.

Re:In korea ... (-1, Redundant)

peterprior (319967) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972829)

In soviet russia old robots talk to you!

Somebody hand me a gun... or the specs. (1)

gd23ka (324741) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972818)

Other than the conversation function, the robot has 15 programs to keep the elderly thinking and healthy, including singing songs, reading out quiz games and old news, and inquiring about health functions.

I wonder if I ever got that old, could I have a gun or some cyanide instead? On second thought, could I have a SDK with it?

We're doomed i say!! (1, Funny)

tom1974 (413939) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972835)

"its makers plan to program the robot in English -- not for export, but to teach the language to Japanese children."

We gaijin engrish teachers are doomed NOW!

I for one welcome our new english teaching overloards at NOVA HQ!

Snuggling Ifbot, huh... (1)

op51n (544058) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972836)

Stupidest. Name. Ever.
I'd have said worst, but really, it's just so silly! But then I guess this is from the nation that brought us one of the finest performance cars ever, titled the Fairlady.

Re:Snuggling Ifbot, huh... (1)

nick korma (836538) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972858)

I think your being a bit harsh - how do you know that it doesnt snuggle up to you.. I have not read the full article - but for all your know - it could bring you a cup of warm milk at night, tuck you into bed and then snuggle up to you... (I have no idea where the ifbot part comes from though - perhaps everything that starts with the letter i is seen as cool now)

Re:Snuggling Ifbot, huh... (1)

Bisqwit (180954) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972880)

So when will Microsoft will sue them because the name is similar to IfNot, their patented invention [uspto.gov] ?

Re:Snuggling Ifbot, huh... (1)

Bisqwit (180954) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972901)

(Nevermind that the URL in that post is wrong... well, nobody checks them anyway.)
Find the correct one with Google or from Slashdot archive.

First, there was The Electric Grandmother (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10972837)

Now there's The Electric Grandchild!

In america.... (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10972846)

In America, Old people get shot by shotgun toting robots.

Domo Arigato, Mr. Roboto! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10972857)



Domo arigato, Mr. Roboto,
Mata ah-oo hima de
Domo arigato, Mr. Roboto,
Himitsu wo shiri tai

You're wondering who I am-machine or mannequin
With parts made in Japan, I am the modern man

I've got a secret I've been hiding under my skin
My heart is human, my blood is boiling, my brain I.B.M.
So if you see me acting strangely, don't be surprised
I'm just a man who needed someone, and somewhere to hide
To keep me alive-just keep me alive
Somewhere to hide to keep me alive

I'm not a robot without emotions-I'm not what you see
I've come to help you with your problems, so we can be free
I'm not a hero, I'm not a saviour, forget what you know
I'm just a man whose circumstances went beyond his control
Beyond my control-we all need control
I need control-we all need control

I am the modern man, who hides behind a mask
So no one else can see my true identity

Domo arigato, Mr. Roboto, domo...domo
Domo arigato, Mr. Roboto, domo...domo
Domo arigato, Mr. Roboto, domo...domo
Thank you very much, Mr. Roboto
For doing the jobs that nobody wants to
And thank you very much, Mr. Roboto
For helping me escape just when I needed to
Thank you-thank you, thank you
I want to thank you, please, thank you

The problem's plain to see: too much technology
Machines to save our lives. Machines dehumanize.

The time has come at last
To throw away this mask
So everyone can see
My true identity...
I'm Kilroy! Kilroy! Kilroy! Kilroy!

I welcome the Anti-Senility Industry overlords (4, Informative)

RealProgrammer (723725) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972864)

My wife works in a nursing home. It's her job to fill the old folks' day with interesting activities. She has to make sure that each one of them gets interaction that's not related to their health maintenance. They have an elaborate system for tracking and monitoring the amount and type of interaction each resident gets.

"Senility" is a blanket term covering all kinds of maladies, including Alzheimer's, the effects of stroke, and atrophy of various kinds. Most people in geriatrics agree that to stave off senility you should use the same tactics you use to stay healthy now. Eat sensibly, get plenty of exercise (including the horizontal variety if you can get it!), and engage in mentally challenging activities.

The mentally challenging activities that are best at delaying senility are things you've never done before. If you've never played music, try learning to play an instrument. Learn another language, especially sign language. If you have an elderly relative, get them hooked on email. It won't take long, since they're usually starved for communication.

A talking robot is fine, but old people really need young people.

robots baby, yeah (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10972868)

elderly population will be able to buy companionship in the form of a 45-centimeter (18-inch) robot

Robot escorts. nice!

Support (4, Funny)

cerberusss (660701) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972872)

We have these robots working at the support department of the company I work at.

Customer: I can't log into my database instance
Support: You can't log into your database instance?

Et cetera...

Re:Support (1)

ic3p1ck (597610) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972950)

Damit why do I always find good posts after I've used up my mod points?

Anyway, here have an unofficial +1 Funny from me :)

Limited use... (1)

troon (724114) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972896)

If a person tells Snuggling Ifbot, "I'm bored today," the robot might respond, "Are you bored? What do you want to do?"

Might respond? That's a lot of money for the possibility of a reply.

Re:Limited use... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10972936)

Especially a reply that doesn't really help.

Depends what they're used for... (-1, Offtopic)

dannytaggart (835766) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972899)

A good Stepford wife would help anybody avoid senility.

MOD PARENT DOWN -- SEXIST BIGOTRY (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10972935)

I know you thought that was funny, but that's a poor excuse for that kind of bigotry. Please care more about other people.

Re:MOD PARENT DOWN -- SEXIST BIGOTRY (0, Offtopic)

jimi the hippie (725322) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972969)

How is that sexist?

Re:Depends what they're used for... (2, Interesting)

Savage-Rabbit (308260) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972960)

Yeah, and sooner or later the following headline would appear on theregister.com:

Robot wife gets stuck in endless programming loop, owner shagged to death.

err... (0)

Heem (448667) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972941)

Dear Slashdotters,

I'm So Sorry [slashdot.org]

Saturday Night Live said it best... (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10972949)

Old Lady #1: When my ex-husband passed away, the insurance company said his policy didn't cover him.

Old Lady #2: They didn't have enough money for the funeral.

Old Lady #3: It's so hard nowadays, with all the gangs and rap music..

Old Lady #1: What about the robots?

Old Lady #4: Oh, they're everywhere!

Old Lady #1: I don't even know why the scientists make them.

Old Lady #2: Darren and I have a policy with Old Glory Insurance, in case we're attacked by robots.

Old Lady #1: An insurance policy with a robot plan? Certainly, I'm too old.

Old Lady #2: Old Glory covers anyone over the age of 50 against robot attack, regardless of current health.

[ cut to Sam Waterston, Compensated Endorser ]

Sam Waterson: I'm Sam Waterston, of the popular TV series "Law & Order". As a senior citizen, you're probably aware of the threat robots pose. Robots are everywhere, and they eat old people's medicine for fuel. Well, now there's a company that offers coverage against the unfortunate event of robot attack, with Old Glory Insurance. Old Glory will cover you with no health check-up or age consideration. [ SUPER: Limitied Benefits First Two Years ] You need to feel safe. And that's harder and harder to do nowadays, because robots may strike at any time.

[ show pie chart reading "Cause of Death in Persons Over 50 Years of Age": Heart Disease, 42% - Robots, 58% ]

And when they grab you with those metal claws, you can't break free.. because they're made of metal, and robots are strong. Now, for only $4 a month, you can achieve peace of mind in a world full of grime and robots, with Old Glory Insurance. So, don't cower under your afghan any longer. Make a choice. [ SUPER: "WARNING: Persons denying the existence of Robots may be Robots themselves. ] Old Glory Insurance. For when the metal ones decide to come for you - and they will.

Decision-Tree of Mind-Design for Robots (1)

Mentifex (187202) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972958)


The Japanese robots -- or any kind of robots -- may be made truly intelligent by means of artificial intelligence [sourceforge.net] based on a collaboratively worked out [advogato.org] theory of mind [sourceforge.net] for AI.

Robot, schmobot (4, Funny)

ajs318 (655362) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972985)

If you want something to keep you fit, healthy, happy and not lonely in your old age, why the freakin' hell not just get a freakin' dog already? Granted, the basic out-of-the-box model needs some hardware mods to avoid spawning too many child processes, and you have to update its virus and worm protection every few months. But you should get at least 6 years uptime -- and probably even more from one using generic, commodity parts from a mixture of suppliers.

In Soviet Korean Japan... (0, Offtopic)

vistic (556838) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972994)

In Soviet Russia, Article about how in Korea, Hearing about how "in Japan, Old People Talk to Robots," is only for Old People! [slashdot.org] reads YOU!

Full circle (1)

yndrd (529288) | more than 9 years ago | (#10972998)

Just thing: a whole generation of children may go from having to talk to Teddy Ruxpin due to loneliness to having to talk to Snuggling Ifbot due to loneliness.

At least Teddy could read stories.

By the example (1)

Rares Marian (83629) | more than 9 years ago | (#10973015)

one gets the impression it increases senility. It should not repeat the question to the user but start dancing in some way while vacuuming.

Well in Soviet Russia... (2, Funny)

olivesaregross (590033) | more than 9 years ago | (#10973021)

Old robots talk to you!!!
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