Looking for future trends, it is clear that wearable computing through the internet of things is a big wave for the next five years but, less reported, is the work on robots.
Whenever we think of robots, we probably have an image of Will Smith in I Robot or the poster for Metropolis, dependent upon what generation you’re in ...
... but robotics is an area that has had lots of work and dollars invested over the past years, particularly in Japan.
This is because Japan is a country with highly limited resources and workers and already employs over a quarter of a million industrial robot workers —more than any other nation — and would like to see that number go up to one million by 2025 according to TIME Magazine.
Certainly Japan is the nation that has always entertained us with robotic innovations from Honda’s flagship bot Asimo (Advanced Step in Innovative MObility), which is now over ten years old:
to the new generation bot unveiled in 2009, the HRP-4C, a feminine-looking humanoid created by the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST), a Japanese research facility.
It is quite clear that through our historic love of the idea of robots that they will be here one day in the not too distant performing all sorts of tasks from cleaning and ironing to driving and flying.
This will be a bonus for some, especially those who need continual care at home, the sick and the elderly, but it will also create concerns for others.
For example, the new Matt Damon film Elysium is full of robots, and portrays a future world that is dark with all the policing of the planet performed by robots with no humour.
Nevertheless, I did like the office bots who manage the citizens activities, especially the parole bot.
This guy made me think that he may be the vision of the future bank manager and if you want to try dealing with him, then checkout the viral campaign for the film.
Excellent (is this the next generation mortgage application process?).
Oh, and this blog entry was inspired by today’s news from the BBC that they think we will soon be having sex with robots (?!), citing a Huffington Post poll that showed most Americans (58%) believe robots will be in our homes by 2030 but only 9% would want to have sex with it.
On that basis, this does sound worth investing in, although some may say it’s just some sort of hedonistic dream.
You make your own mind up.