Archive for the ‘technology’ Category

School pupils are to be taught by the world’s first robot teacher in one of the most radical uses so far of android technology. The device, created by scientists after 15 years of research, is being trialed at a primary school in Tokyo.

Named Saya, she can speak different languages, carry out roll calls, set tasks and make facial expressions – including anger – thanks to 18 motors hidden behind her latex face.

Her creator, science professor Hiroshi Kobayashi at the University of Tokyo, had been working on a robot for 15 years. She is the latest example of robots spreading to every aspect of life in Japan. The Japanese government has said that by 2015 it wants a robot in every home and is pouring $35 million (£23 million) into robotic intelligence to make it happen.

The push is because of Japan’s ageing population – in seven years one in four Japanese will be over 65 – which means the workforce is declining, pushing up wage costs for businesses and making recruitment difficult. Telegraph.co.uk

While this is a pretty amazing invention, I can’t see these robot teachers being such a good thing outside of Japan. If they ever brought something like that into the American public school system – which they probably won’t ever do because education funding is like an extremely low priority and our teachers barely get paid so why would the government pay for these robots – I couldn’t imagine such positive stories as a result. (more…)


Read Full Post »

Sidenote: The Black Snob let me post one of my pieces this week on her site while she’s on blogcation. And Average Bro is letting me write for his site too. Double yay! I’m so excited.I was going to post about the G20 Summit today, but after watching the news, and doing some reading online, there was just too much for me to absorb, so I won’t comment on it yet. What I got so far is Obama and Michelle looked nice as they departed for Europe:
AP Photo/Charles Dharapak

AP Photo/Charles Dharapak

And French President Nicolas Sarkozy is threatening a walkout of the conference if the nation’s demands for stricter financial rules are not put into place. They’re always protesting something in the UK and France.

Go here for more in-depth coverage. BBC is really good at covering world events and providing background facts.

So, while I was reading about the economic summit, one of my friends asked me if a text message they received was just wrong. A person he talks to from time to time (but is not a close friend or family), sent him a text for a pretty big favor. Something that would probably be better asked in a phone call, not a text message. For example, if you need a kidney from a distant friend, that might just be the time to pick up the phone, not send an e-mail. (more…)

Read Full Post »

Just when I had given my laptop a nickname of endearment, this story comes out. A new cyber spy network that can install cameras and microphones onto computers.

Read Full Post »