telenoid hugging robot

Looking for a way to make Grandma feel special, without the inconvenience of actually having to visit? Give her a creepy plastic doll that remotely relays your facial expressions.

Or not. I used to give my grandmother peppermints, and she seemed to like that just fine. But if you’re one of those folks that feel the answer to every question is “technology!”, the telenoid may be for you.

Is the “sexbot” tag really appropriate for this story? Maybe, maybe not. Nobody in the video below mentions sex. It’s all very innocent–delivering hugs and smiles to distant loved ones. Yeah. That’s how it starts.

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One Response to telenoid hugging robot

  1. The creepy wiggling pillow in the video is the invention of noted Japanese roboticist Hiroshi Ishiguro. His creation is called the Telenoid R1, and it’s designed to be a communication tool. Think of it as a cross between Skype videoconferencing and a puppet. One person speaks into microphone while a webcam scans the user’s facial movements. Miles away, the Telenoid R1 “speaks,” and mimics the caller’s expressions. As one can see from the video, it’s the perfect way to never actually have to visit your feeble granddad that smells like tuna salad and loneliness. It should be noted that robotics is an enormous industry in Japan, a country eager for solutions to their huge eldercare problem that doesn’t involve importing large numbers of foreign-born nurses. Robots wash, feed and clean invalid patients. Robots are set to play a huge part in Japan’s future. The whole world will follow suit. However, the evolution of robotics will follow this rule: genitals first, then Gatling guns.

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