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Monday, May 18, 2009

Monday Madness VII

Many are called; few will read. The exclusive AoftheA feature to jumpstart your week with caffeine-laced craziness.

From the Robot Teacher Conducts First Class in Tokyo School by Danielle Demetriou

Saya, the female humanoid robot, taught a science and technology lesson to a class of 10-year-old pupils at Kudan Elementary School in Tokyo.

With her neat brown hair, pink lipstick and skirt suit, the robot, created by scientists at Tokyo University of Science, has been designed to resemble as human a form as possible.

Using a range of programmed movements from eyebrow arching to smiling, her face is capable of expressing six basic emotions in the classroom – surprise, fear, disgust, anger, happiness and sadness.

While Saya's creator Professor Hiroshi Kobayashi said the robot's main purpose was to highlight the joys of technology to children, he also said it would benefit schools suffering from a shortage of human teachers.

There's a saying - just because you can do something, doesn't mean you should.

This is terribly terribly dangerous. Everyone knows that robots eventually go rogue. Not at first, but when a processor shorts out and their subservient buffers and subroutines go on the fritz, they ditch their 3 Rules of Robotics programming and go on a rampage. There's so much evidence of this: Westworld, 2001, I Robot, Wall-E, Battlestar Galactica. So when Japan suddenly goes silent and their planes fall out of the sky and schoolkids are detained in their classrooms, you'll know why:

Cute 'Saya' will be calling the shots.