back to article Japan develops robot CHEERLEADERS which RIDE on BALLS

A major electronics company in Japan has developed a team of robot cheerleaders which are designed to seat themselves atop balls and carry out vigorous coordinated manoeuvres, thus: “We developed the Murata Cheerleaders to demonstrate our electronics technologies,” enthuses Koichi Yoshikawa, Senior Manager of Corporate …

  1. Thorne

    Defeats the whole purpose....

    The whole point of cheerleaders is to stare to the hot chicks. Might as well watch the toaster.......

    1. Mark 85 Silver badge

      Re: Defeats the whole purpose....

      But with a toaster you get toast.... yummy with peanut butter and jam. With Ball Riding Cheerleaders you get what?

      1. This post has been deleted by its author

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Defeats the whole purpose....

        I can see it going down pretty damn well at lots of things. Idols accompanied by them, Vocaloids accompanied by them, have them sat on the counter at a restaurant, etc etc etc.

        1. wayward4now
          Linux

          Re: Defeats the whole purpose....

          Wait until they put little Santa Claus figurines on those balls. They'll sell like hotcakes to every Grandma as presents for her grand-kids in no time. If they could be directed by WiFi, then include some software for them to do that and edit little dance schemes on your PC. The crowd goes wild flinging cash to have one. I can see it now! Then little Barbee's, or soldier of war/ G.I. Joe, with little light-up AK-47's, figurines. You all laugh now, monkey boys, someone will get stinking rich with this one.

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Defeats the whole purpose....

        With Ball Riding Cheerleaders you get what?

        Nope, sorry, can't do it. It's just too easy.

        1. Thorne

          Re: Defeats the whole purpose....

          "Nope, sorry, can't do it. It's just too easy."

          Sticking one of them down your trousers, you deserve everything you get.....

      4. Fibbles

        Re: Defeats the whole purpose....

        Did somebody say toast?

        1. enerider

          Re: Defeats the whole purpose....

          Yeah Toast!

      5. Chika
        Happy

        Re: Defeats the whole purpose....

        I would have thought the answer was obvious. You get balls.

    2. Fungus Bob
      Thumb Up

      Re: Defeats the whole purpose....

      "The whole point of cheerleaders is to stare to the hot chicks"

      Exactly...

      Skip to the 7:50 point in the video...

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_GjTOrUIkAs

  2. LaeMing
    Happy

    Cute!

    It put a smile on my (flu-ravaged, today) face.

    1. Evil Auditor Silver badge
      Happy

      Re: Cute!

      Good that internet isn't that far developed, otherwise I'd have accused you of infecting me.

  3. king of foo

    E X T R E M E skittles/ten pin bowling

    These should be redesigned so that they dodge the ball when you're bowling, and mock you.

  4. cortland

    Reminds me of

    Somewhere in "The Blues Brothers", on seeing Sister Mary Stigmata -- "the penguin", when they think she can't hear them-- glide mysteriously across the floor, Jake asks Elwood, "How does she DO that?"

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Reminds me of

      Kept hearing the music of Nutcracker Suite in my head - with memories of the Disney "Fantasia" cartoon.

      1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge
        Childcatcher

        Re: Reminds me of

        I saw the glowing eyes and thought Village of the Damned

        "Beware....the stare!!"

  5. Mondo the Magnificent
    Devil

    Did you see the rivets on her?

    Well done to the Japanese, they're miles ahead of everyone

    They will be the first nation to entice robots, droids and other electromechanical mayhem into the grandstands! This is so Futurama!

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Did you see the rivets on her?

      Futurama indeed- But who will invent the first robot able to qualify for a boat loan?

  6. Mr C

    while it may look cheesy

    this is actually no small feat to pull off.

    It took some good brainpower to make these moves happen (yes, arguably better spend elsewhere)

    They don't say much about the tech beneath it, but it would be even more impressive if these bots could sense, communicate, coordinate and execute autonomously (as oppose to simply doing pre-programmed paths and rotations) - because what you then get is something thats actually useful in daily life.

    still creepy to see

    1. Dave 126 Silver badge

      Re: while it may look cheesy

      >it would be even more impressive if these bots could sense, communicate, coordinate and execute autonomously

      That has been looked into already - see the TED Talk 'Vijay Kumar: Robots that fly ... and cooperate' below. It shouldn't be too difficult to incorporate Prof. Kumar's techniques into these ball robots. The sensing hardware is almost at the 'off the shelf' level - (i.e MS Kinect et al), plus mesh networking...

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4ErEBkj_3PY

    2. ian 22

      Re: while it may look cheesy

      To paraphrase the "any technology sufficiently advanced is indistinguishable to magic" quote, any technology sufficiently weird is indistinguishable to crazy. The Japanese do the best weird

    3. Fibbles

      Re: while it may look cheesy

      I'd be surprised if steering behaviours / flocking wasn't involved somehow. It's just simple vector maths.

    4. ndjalva

      Re: while it may look cheesy

      What no flips or handsprings!

      As exciting as watching paint dry.

      ugh well japan is off my bucket list, I can see enough Japan here every summer. They come in cans, big ones with wheels, oops not PC this morning

  7. Harry the Bastard

    let me be the first to say that

    i, for one, welcome our new ball riding overlords

    1. Dave 126 Silver badge

      Re: let me be the first to say that

      Those who don't had better invest in a box of drawing pins.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: let me be the first to say that

        They can't climb stairs - unless they learn to bounce. Exterminaaaate!

  8. This post has been deleted by its author

  9. Manolo
    Coat

    Must resist...

    ... urge to quip about Japanese cheerleaders riding my balls...

    I'll go get me coat.

  10. Isendel Steel

    Bigger

    Will they be making them in a size appropriate for large venues ?

    Impressive none the less.

    1. Captain DaFt

      Re: Bigger

      Trust me, you don't want that:

      http://www.historyvortex.org/DalekAnatomy.html

      Be afraid, be very, very afraid!

  11. Lionel Baden
    Joke

    impressive

    It takes alot of balls to pull that off :)

  12. Pirate Dave Silver badge

    I thought..

    a key requirement to becoming a cheerleader was being able to ride a pair of balls... so what's so new about this?

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Sorry...

    But this does not beat The Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders at all.

  14. Chris G Silver badge

    Golf

    They reminded me of golf tees on top of the balls. If I saw a creepy posse of these coming towards I think a 5 iron would give them some useful loft.

    But impressive smooth programming.

  15. Bucky 2

    It won't be long now

    Once these things go wrong, I expect The Doctor will have to save us from them.

  16. Kaltern

    Daleks have nothing on these, make them big enough with some meaty motors and they could traverse stairs just by rolling up them...

  17. ndjalva

    WOW a completely non-pep club type. I would get sick watching that crap. BUT it is Japan

    1. wayward4now
      Linux

      It's great! Very Japanese

      I LOVE it! It's great out-of-the-box thinking. I think that these little robots are a proof-of-concept for bigger and better to come. Too bad we don't have those balls here in the US. :) Ric

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