We are not kidding you. In Japan there is a cute giant robotic bear, specifically designed to care and assist elderly Japanese citizens, aiding them in tasks like lifting.
As we have discussed before, Japan’s population is ageing and fewer children are born* creating quite a number of problems, like not having enough caregivers for the elderly. To help even the balance, Japan is looking into several solutions and one of them is robotics.
Three robotic bears have been created already named ROBEAR, RIBA and RIBA-II, and these scientific miracles from research institute Riken can gently lift and carry an immobile patient, help him or her stand or offer support to aid the patient in walking.
It is very sugoi, we think, that a polar bear-looking robot nurse can take care of the elderly. It is a pity they are not on the market yet, but according research team leader Toshiharu Mukai they are hoping to commercialize the robot in the near future.
A future is coming, as we have seen in countless anime like Chobits, Bubblegum Crisis and Ghost in the Shell where one-day robots will really be commonplace and in many households. Japan is opening the door to that future in strides. Already there are receptionists** and newscasters** that are robots, and now three giant robo-bear nurses have joined their ranks.
To see the kawaii robot bears, please follow this link: http://goo.gl/mxHzpK
* See our article on the decline of the Japanese population by following this link: http://goo.gl/B4Jm14
** For more on robotics, follow the link to our article here: http://goo.gl/XK4l9V