tech

Tokyo airport to be 'scattered' with robots for 2020 Olympics

30 Comments
By Kazuhiro NOGI

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© 2017 AFP

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"We want foreign tourists to think that the Japanese people are cool when they come here," Kuratomi told AFP.

If that is the case, staff the airports with people, not robots. People will not think Japanese people are "cool" simply because they met a robot in Japan. Rather odd logic if you ask me...

22 ( +23 / -1 )

"We want foreign tourists to think that the Japanese people are cool when they come here," Kuratomi told AFP.

Oh, for the love of sanity.

16 ( +17 / -1 )

Visitors speak into a furry microphone, and translations appear instantly on a smart screen.

So I get to know what, what I just said, looks like in Japanese? There’s about a thousand apps for that, no? I’ll give points for the furry cat, though.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Eh...they haven’t really thought this one through have they?

the above posters just about says it all.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Ah, playing the old 'Japanese do robots card again. Yawn

7 ( +9 / -2 )

Haneda airport is bracing for a sharp increase in visitors from abroad and hopes robots can compensate for a lack of staff.

Yes, but how are visitors supposed to know which are the helper robots, and which are the Decepticons?!

6 ( +6 / -0 )

@Cruisin

Brilliant!

4 ( +4 / -0 )

You literally can't like people if they're not people. Robots have nothing to do with making a little connection and liking a people. This is why people think Japan is weird, so they'll just reinforce that. Sigh

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Travellers may also be approached by a small white humanoid robot, Cinnamon, asking if they need its help.

That doesn't sound "cool" to me. More like a pain in the butt.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

No need to deploy these. The airport and everywhere else has them already.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

More of our taxes foolishly spent!

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Just big enough to stuff in backpacks as souvenirs.

10 ( +10 / -0 )

That plastic blob with a screen is someone's idea of humanoid?

(Perhaps someone needs to spend some time outside the lab).

6 ( +6 / -0 )

It should be; "We want foreign tourists to think that the Japanese robots are cool when they come here," Kuratomi told AFP.

They won't be meeting people.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

It'd be cool to have them in toilets - y'know, brushing up to you at a urinal or squeezing in with you to a stall, unblinking expressionless eyes always monitoring, perhaps occasionally giving advice. Given the complexity of Toto toilets, it might come in handy. That'd be really cool.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

More tablets on wheels?

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Anything to keep foreigners at arms length or further, "How was Japan?" Really weird these non vacuuming vacuum bots followed me around asking me ,"help do you need", me can help. Chopsticks can you use? Totally strange idea.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

what happens if you say "This is a pen" ?

4 ( +4 / -0 )

There will be security bots as well. These can act if any sign of terrorist activity.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

so much better to teach foreign languages to young people and give them jobs meeting and greeting.  this whole Japan robot thing is a bore.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

NOT

cool

Travellers may also be approached by a small white humanoid robot, Cinnamon, asking if they need its help

'Please direct me to the nearest human!'

However, @laguna has a point:

Given the complexity of Toto toilets, it might come in handy

2 ( +2 / -0 )

'Scatter'brained waste of money... It would cost less and be more beneficial for Japan and visitors to hire Japanese language students as cultural envoys. (My personal 'fluffy cat mascot' was a wretched stray in Tokyo, but is now a spoiled indoor cat in Vancouver!)

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Wow ... what a childish statement ... "We want to foreigners to think that Japanese are cool" ... I would say that I already see a lot of robots in airports or as a matter of fact all over Japan.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I realize that as a foreigner I have no input into this ... idea, but when I’m in an airport and frazzled from travel and have a problem, I want to speak to, yell at, complain to, another human being; not a piece of plastic. Odd, I know, that I need human communication but, well, I’m a foreigner afterall.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

The one thing that annoys me more than any thing about my country (the UK) is the lack of human intervention, i.e. blinking robots, we have automatic banks, you put you money in a machine, banks are getting rid of humans and replacing them with machines, petrol stations card payment at the machine, this list can go on, but the biggest annoyance is the mobile phone! a large percentage of people have ear plugs in listening to music or what ever, but inso doing this they have switched off from the real world and don't communicate, theres even sex robotic dolls! in the case of the air ports, why don't they offer part time or full time to students who are learning a foreign language? you can't beat a hands on direct communication with a native speaker, the students would 1; get paid, 2; get vital experience 3; the air port would not have to spend money on this tech robots, 4; what about employing senior citizens who seek a foreign language to help out at the airports? If i have come off a long flight and feeling a bit frazzled the last thing I would not want to do is try and communicate with a heartless, soulless, cold, plastic robot, with a synthesised voice, like Pro Steven Hawkins, but I am sure that if a nice young lady approached me and said "good morning how can I help" its just so much better. my advice would to the airport, ditch the tech, get humans!

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Even better would be that travelling T-shirt where you point to an icon of what you want (Taxi, hotel, food etc) to another human being, have a laugh, and get going.

People will be at the Olympics to watch humans and connect with others. The sport and spectacle is all about excellence of human beings.

You need human beings to build opportunities. This builds nothing. What a colossal missed opportunity for young and old alike to practice their language skills and make an impact

2 ( +2 / -0 )

"We want foreign tourists to think that the Japanese people are cool when they come here," Kuratomi told AFP.

Really? So cool that a mobile iPad is more functional than a Japanese human. Wow, way cool.....

1 ( +1 / -0 )

There will be security bots as well. These can act if any sign of terrorist activity.

So can people. Much more effective too.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

If the UX is no better than that of the smartphone most people carry, there is no point to having these "helpers." It seems gimmicky and someone will be lining their pockets on yet another poorly thought out plan. Here's an idea: save the money, spend it on teaching your staff various languages and pull Japan in line with most of the other modern countries in the world.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

So is that what the 1000 yen departure tax is being spent on ?

3 ( +3 / -0 )

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