All posts tagged: robotics

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.


While up in Tokyo I met up with my old friend ASIMO. We had a falling out a few years ago when I bought a Suzuki Swift rather than the Honda S2000, but we’re back to talking again. At least I’m talking and he’s staring vacantly in my direction. ASIMO showed me his new dance moves, and he seemed to be able to run a little faster than last time we met. I asked if he’d been programmed with Asimov’s Three Laws of Robotics. He nodded, but for a brief moment I’m sure one of his eyes glowed red.