back to article Powered robot suits make debut on Tokyo streets

Japanese scientists developing a powered exoskeletal suit intended for "heavy labour", "rescue support at disaster sites" and use by the disabled or elderly - not to mention applications in "the entertainment field" - have taken their equipment out for a test drive on the streets of Tokyo. Here's a vid of the trial: As can …

COMMENTS

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  1. Graham Dawson Silver badge
    Terminator

    WHAT

    They're actually called *cyberdyne*? Good grief...

    (in anticipation of everyone else who said the same thing, I thought of it first! I'm just slow.)

  2. Evil Auditor Silver badge

    Meaningful live

    "To be able to live a meaningful remaining time depends on the existence of technologies"

    Alternatively, cope with your ageing, be happy and comit suicide before 40.

    EA

  3. Julian I-Do-Stuff
    Terminator

    Upgrades?

    I want the liquid metal exoskeleton

  4. Jason Togneri
    Terminator

    Cyberdyne

    Brilliant. Shouldn't this be filed under Rise Of The Machines?

  5. sig
    Welcome

    We are Borg

    Resistence is futile!

    The more people that use these the more will need the upcoming enhanced artificial heart.

  6. stu 4
    Terminator

    £1360 a month!!!

    What the hell are they made of ? mimetic poly-alloy ?

  7. Tim Schomer
    Pint

    Looking at the uniforms...

    These look like they'd be good for keeping the Police men and women on the beat longer (hopefully they can be programmed NOT to stop at donut shops).

    Alternatively, if they improve stability they'd be absolutely perfect for an extended pub crawl.

  8. jsp
    Terminator

    HAL

    I assume the choice of the name HAL was deliberate as well.

  9. Cameron Colley

    What fail-safes do these things have?

    I suppose a leg only bends in a few different ways so the changes or serious damage to the user should the device not stop moving are slight -- but with the degrees of freedom in the arm joints being in some degree dependant on the position of other joints (at least in the inflexible) I can foresee some nasty injuries should these things go wrong.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Joke

    It could be worse...

    As projects come and go, this seems fairly safe and useful. Something like the Human Instrumentality Project, but with less of an impact.

  11. Tom_
    FAIL

    what does the video actually demonstrate?

    It looks a bit like plastic things strapped to peoples' legs. They don't really show what having a set of these things does.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Black Helicopters

    To Hell with "Flying Reliant Robins", Where the Hell is my wakling Gundam?!?!

    Yes but, when will this 'Tech' pan out to build bigger things, like Gundam's and other Super Robots like Mazinger

    HAIL ZEON!

    /r/ Colony Drop Icon, till then I guess I'll run with Hand Grenade.

    Take that you dirty Earthers!

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @stu 4

    I'd expect they're hand/custom made (if you see what I mean) at the moment as such are stupidly expensive, like a car before mass production.

    They seem to be making relatively rapid progress, how long until they can make something they can put on a production line and make real money out of though?

  14. Random Noise

    Troopers

    Is it just me or does anyone else think this would look awesome as part of a storm trooper costume?

  15. Ray0x6
    Terminator

    Awesome!

    Next stop... Gundam!

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    WIN!

    That's so win - you could be the leetest cyber in the goth club with some of that kit :D

  17. Tom 15

    Ah...

    Ah, my suit of Power Armour that I have been waiting for.

  18. Charles 9 Silver badge
    Happy

    Leave it to the Japanese...

    ...to try their darndest to put the concept of the mech (or mecha, depending on who you ask) into real life. To their credit, the concept is proceeding along utilitarian lines primarily--mobile enhancement and labor assistance. And they're not making any promises or timelines--getting these things into more managaeble forms will probably be at least another decade. As long as it remains a manned machine, I say best of luck to them.

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Terminator

    Knight Sabers...

    ..."sanjo!"

  20. MinionZero
    Terminator

    Cyberdyne?!

    It looks like it'll really be helpful to use in physiotherapy and maybe even help some elderly people, but still, I want to know how they can get away with calling themselves Cyberdyne (same goes for the IRobot company). Both companies have no mention of leasing the rights to the names or using it under a license, which would be the usual licensing method of showing its being used under license.

    I thought I would ask, as I'm now the Director of Starfleet.

  21. Ihre Papiere Bitte!!
    Pint

    Just don't try to run....

    It'll tell you that it's afraid it can't do that. Dave.

  22. pctechxp
    Terminator

    Cyberdyne and the Humanoid Control Project

    The Cyborg terminators will be here before we know it .

  23. Chris Hunt
    Linux

    The wrong trousers?

    Techno-trousers hit the Tokyo streets! Don't these people watch Wallace & Grommit?

  24. Simon B
    Grenade

    What a shit video!

    What a shit video! All it shows is people waling around,nothing unusual or neding extra strength ... crap!!

  25. Dan 63

    Missing footage

    Where's the footage of them running and jumping and kicking in doors and stuff?

  26. Colin 4
    Paris Hilton

    poor fit ?

    The girl looks like hers is poorly fitted - she looks extremely uncomfortable.

    Either that or she is walking awkwardly for some other reason ....

    Chose Paris because I'm sure she walks like this way pretty often ;)

  27. Andrew Moore
    Coat

    The Fools!!!

    Don't they know it's only a matter of time before they go haywire and force them to kick Bishop Brennan- UP THE ARSE!!!

  28. 2FishInATank
    Paris Hilton

    Hmmm

    It looks like the current iteration of the device is better suited to the male walking gait than that of the female - it looks decidedly clunky in it's movements on the lady demonstrator....

    Oh, and add me to the legion of people wondering about their choice of business and product names.

    Paris because her walking gait gets altered by other means!

  29. Anonymous Coward
    FAIL

    For all us first aiders...

    How are we supposed to take your pulse if you're fitted with a Continuous Flow Heart?

  30. Evil Auditor Silver badge

    @Colin re girl

    This suit doesn't do well neither with her swivelling hips nor with bowlegs. Then again, all those guinea pigs look rather unconfortable in their legs.

  31. Jasper 1
    Terminator

    I for one...

    ...would like to welcome our power assisted pedestrian overlords

  32. The Indomitable Gall

    @Charles9

    But it wasn't the Japanese that got there first -- this very organ was reporting US Army cybersuits not so long ago...

  33. Anonymous Coward
    Unhappy

    £1360 a month??

    Not until I see somebody use them to leap over a tall building!

    I watched the video with excited anticipation of just that... and am left bitterly disappointed.

  34. Anonymous Coward
    Jobs Horns

    No skull masks ?

    Looks like a bunch of half-cut, half-arsed, trick-or-treaters. Could at least have got hold of a few plastic scythes and a mask each.

  35. Winkypop Silver badge
    Terminator

    The Goodies, circa 1976

    Didn't the Goodies invent robot shoes years ago?

    Viz: power walking boots...

    "2001 and a Bit" - Episode № 54 - Air date: 26 October 1976 (UK)

  36. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    Bindun

    "They're techno-trousers, ex-NASA, fantastic for walkies! "

  37. Dex
    Welcome

    A title is required

    i for one welcome our robotically limb-assisted overlords.......beats killer zimmerframes anyday

  38. Robert Moore
    Pint

    Useless

    Until I can hook a satnav into it, and have it walk me home after a hard night at my local.

  39. Stu
    Alert

    Boring vid!

    Typical.

    Aint it fine how the title for El-Reg articles instill wonderful images in your minds eye?

    Theres me thinking they'd be at least running around, jumping high into the air and over long distances, punching holes thru brick fifty feet off the ground, knocking small office blocks to the ground, battling each other, launching surprisingly slow moving missiles and fricking laser beams at each other, all whilst devastating the ward of Chiyoda into rubble.

    Smashy smashy.

    .

    ...now imagine the disappointment watching that vid.

  40. Anonymous Coward
    FAIL

    Model Walk -FAIL

    These are probably hired models.

    The girl is trying the classic catwalk "model walk," where you cross your legs.

    Not with that kit on, you won't.

  41. Anonymous Coward
    Unhappy

    I for one

    ..am disappointed. By the time these become readily avalible I'll be an old man.

  42. TimeMaster T
    Happy

    Wheres May?

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hand_Maid_May#Characters

    I'd like to pre-order the 1:1 scale model please.

  43. Stjohn Roe
    Grenade

    Humanoid Control Project

    Oh please, geriatric robs off license and delivers booze to teenage hacker!

    BTW: Will they do them in black?

  44. John 104

    Good Hip Action!

    "The girl looks like hers is poorly fitted - she looks extremely uncomfortable.

    Either that or she is walking awkwardly for some other reason ...."

    Looks to me like she just has some nice girl hip action going - even in robot legs!

  45. Casper Orillian
    Alien

    technology with age?

    "Human only gets older and weaker after they grow up, and it is unavoidable. To be able to live a meaningful remaining time depends on the existence of technologies."

    wasnt this the base of the technologies for william gibsons pandoras star books?

    alien because, well read the books

  46. Trygve Henriksen
    Thumb Down

    That was CRAP!

    That 'skeleton' doesn't look solid enough to carry any load.

    And it wasn't properly fastened to add and support to the wearer, either.

    The US Army model mentioned here earlier was clunky and suffered from poor batteries, but at least it worked.

  47. Adam Foxton
    FAIL

    Wouldn't it have made sense

    to develop versions that- while they may lack the battery longevity- worked much faster and allowed, say, improved jumping?

    Or strap another set to your arms and go around punching holes in walls?

    What evidence was there that those were working powered-exoskeletons on the video as opposed to an early effort at a Halloween costume?

  48. Neoc
    Happy

    And to keep the anime themes going...

    I want my MOSPEADA! (currently building a set of CVR-3 armour for cosplay)

  49. Richard Freeman
    WTF?

    Fake all of it

    Does this mean that If I strap a couple of sticks to my Legs, then I too can get funding from the Japanese government?

  50. Dr Patrick J R Harkin

    Looks like the morning after a Stormtrooper stag night

    Man, where's my helmet? Vader's gonna kill me!

    Helmet - dude you're down six sections of armour; you look like a "protocol droid" know what I'm saying?

  51. Myst
    Thumb Up

    Re: And to keep the anime themes going...

    Bring on my Eva unit!!

  52. Andy Bright
    Stop

    Bah..

    It's been almost a week since you did this story and still no one has mentioned the obvious fact that this is little more than a move towards building our first Cylons. So the end of the world, etc is upon us.. so much for pig flu signaling the Apocalypse, we're going to go out in blood bath of our own devising.

    No doubt when the last 20K or so humans create a rag tag fleet and head off into the deep black yonder, we'll pass that other lot coming the other way..

  53. Clinton
    Go

    I want to see...

    ...jumping, climbing, running.

    A football match would do nicely thankyouverymuch.

  54. MeRp

    The girl

    seems to be walking much like just about every Japanese woman I saw when I was there... I think it is just their style of walking.

  55. Anony mouse

    boring

    we're the video of them leaping tall building in a single bound..??

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