An anonymous reader writes to mention a Yahoo! news article about robotics in Japan. While many research bots are working on interacting with their environment, some of Japan's commercial robotics are focusing on building bots for elderly care. From the article: "The 100-kilogram (220-pound) robot can also distinguish eight different kinds of smells, can tell which direction a voice is coming from and uses powers of sight to follow a human face. 'In the future, we would like to develop a capacity to detect a human's health condition through his breath,' Mukai said. Japan is bracing for a major increase in needs for elderly care due to a declining birth rate and a population that is among the world's longest living." That sure sounds familiar.
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