All posts tagged: robot

Gundam Statue, Odaiba, Tokyo

There’s an 18-meter Gundam statue in front of DiverCity Tokyo Plaza, Odaiba, Tokyo. I know nothing about Gundam, so I shall turn to Wikipedia. The Gundam Series (ガンダムシリーズ ) is a metaseries of space opera anime created by Sunrise studios that features giant robots (or “mecha”) called “Mobile Suits” (MS); usually the protagonist’s MS will carry the name “Gundam.” Sounds a bit like the giant robot suits in the very mediocre Pacific Rim movie.  The statue was pretty impressive, and worth checking out if you’re visiting Odaiba.

Nao by Aldebaran Robotics

Along with Pepper, Aldebaran Robotics produce Nao, an autonomous, programmable humanoid robot. Nao is far more advanced than it’s younger sibling. At around US$8000 dollars, it is not really a consumer product, but an innovative way to study robotics. Nao has taken over from Aibo as the robot of choice for educators, and teams of Nao compete in the Robot Soccer World Cup. Of course, Nao is far from human. In fact, as I told the robot at the Softbank store in Tokyo, “You’ll never be a real boy”. Nao made his opinions on the matter quite clear…

Pepper by Aldebaran Robotics

Pepper is a humanoid robot by Aldebaran Robotics and SoftBank Mobile. They are currently on display at a few special Softbank stores in Tokyo. Pepper will go on sale in Japan in 2015 with a price tag of around US$2000 dollars. This is a lot of money for a household gadget, but amazingly cheap for high-tech robotics. It is a fraction of the price of Paro the robotic seal or Aibo the robotic dog. My guess is that there will be some kind of obligatory monthly wifi contract you need to sign up for when purchasing Pepper. This would provide updates for the robot and be the main source of income for Softbank.