Not getting one for Dad
I want one to keep my Furbies entertained. That should be a riot to watch!
If your granny has gone 'round the bend, Fujitsu has just the item to bring her back to the here and now: a robotic, theraputic teddy bear. This new high-tech teddy — labeled in Google-translatese as a "badger type Sosharurobotto child" — was designed by Fujitsu to treat geriatric dementia, and was revealed at the digital …
My mother has Alzheimer's. It effects her short term memory at the moment. If I provided this to her, she'd be insulted. Alzheimer's is no laughing matter, not for the person it effects or the family around them. It ruins the lives of all those involved. Its interaction with real people that helps, not some silly toy. It would have better if they'd given the money wasted on this to a charity or for research.
There is a 1 in 3 chance your parent or partner will get this terrible disease. It not only effects the old, but people are now getting it in their 40's and 50's.
"Its interaction with real people that helps, not some silly toy."
I don't think that's necessarily true. The teddy can give consistent responses, is non-threatening, and can be used by the patient to safely try out different behaviours (such as strategies for coping with their condition, or physical exercises) that they might be reluctant to do with a human.
But I would expect they need human interaction too, although I'm not a doctor.
I'm assuming this was tested with Japanese test subjects, and of course there's the Japanese gadgetry fetish. I don't suppose this'll even work for westerners, though it might be entertaining envisioning how it might and then what it'd look like.
In the meantime, my brain flashed me images of camo bears for vets and urban camo bears for.... I need to bleach my brain now.
The makers of this are not laughing at Alzheimers, the fact is very little is known about the causes and as a result how best to help. Somebody has tried something a little bit left field which, initial results show, might just help a little bit. Okay so it's not a cure but surely you must welcome anything which has a chance of helping.
It was also produced by a commercial company, not a charity. Okay they will be hoping to make money out of it but it's still better than a lot of things people make money out of (I'm thinking weapons etc)
Now giving it to someone who doesn't have alzheimers, that would be an insult!
Don't think your Nan would say that as she will come from a generation that learnt to spell before the internet. Unless you are a total looser it is spelt LOSING.
Then again she may be from the 60s generation and is thinking that she is dealing with dementia by taking halocinogenic drugs to loose her mind from its normal confines ... and sees this as the only rational explanation as to why a teddy bear is talking to her.
The kids are all socially conditioned by their "robotic"/Computer cuddly bear/terminal/friend.
The dissident group tampers with the programming of one Child's Mentor .
What could possibly go wrong when they extend this to kids?
Maybe Harry Harrison's "I always do what Teddy says" from "Two Tales and Eight Tomorrows"
But also could be a Ray Bradbury or Philip K Dick. Too dark I think for Asimov or A.C. Clarke
Not Teddy by Brian Aldiss. I probably don't want to ever watch Spielberg's AI, the film version.
Not The Rowan, by Anne McCaffrey. A rosier tinted view.
I'm sure I've read all the above.
"Robot therapy offers advantages such as not having any of the hygiene-related problems that can accompany animals and of course, these robots do not bite."
Dog poo to be replaced by leaking or exploding batteries. Thinking about hygiene - these things will need to be washable or they will end up smelling of old people i.e. piss.
Most dogs (and cats, for that matter) appear to be well acquainted with the concept of "not biting the hand that feeds you".
The behavior of family pets is something that Social Services note in their paperwork, when dealing with the elderly. But it can be a complication, when an elderly person is caring for a cat.
At least this contraption doesn't have to be coaxed out of cupboards when the human is rushed to hospital.
Right now, I get the sense of a bit too much hype, but Japan, in particular, does have a significant population time bomb, and they are looking at ways of taking advantage of machines.
So let me get this straight, a motorised teddy bear with a camera in its nose.... so... naughty people can equip it with a wi-fi connection and a little bit of hackery-pokery and voila... not the best item of technology to have in your house....
Although in ur girlfriends house is a different matter i suspect !!!
So, when I've got Alzheimer's and am only able to remember events that happened in my youth whilst lying in a bed, doubtless with white linen sheets, in some institution and a freaky teddy bear starts walking across the room towards me - I'll be expecting it to start bleeding milk...