Japanese companies rush to get robots into homes


Four of Japan's leading technology companies have joined forces with the goal of getting robots into hundreds of thousands of homes around the world so they can help out with everyday activities. "I think many people would like to have a robot that could help them get up if they fall down, assuming no one else is there," Gregory Dudek, a computer science professor at McGill told CTV News. For now, though, scientists admit robots have limited capabilities and mobility. Therefore, they have a relatively small number of everyday uses. They can complete tasks like "basic cleaning, maybe even lawn mowing -- stuff that basically is tedious (and) repetitive," says Frank Ferrie, a professor at McGill's Centre for Intelligent Machines. Dudek says it's hard to predict how robots may transform homes, communities, or even society. "Who knows, it's really hard to read a crystal ball and know what you want when it isn't there," he said.