back to article Tencent Cloud slaps googly eyes on a monitor, says it can care for oldies

Tencent Cloud has released an odd robot-adjacent device designed to provide telemedicine services. The effort is called i-Care and is the result of a tie up with USA-based IT services Millennium Technology Services (MTS)'s subsidiary Invincible Technology. The two companies set out to create "a digital solution that aims to …

  1. ShadowSystems Silver badge

    What could go wrong?

    An AI algo, some DL/ML data mining of a massive database of PII including healthcare info on millions of people, a DeepFake chatbot, & someone "accidentally" leaving an access node in/unsecured so someone can waltz right in, download a copy of said data, & inject their own video clips, chatbot scripts, & other "amusing" replies to patient questions.

    P: Hey Doc, what's this wierd growth on my toe?

    AI DeepFake injected reply: It's terminal. Please leave all your money to Our Glorious Leader and then kill yourself in a humane fashion.

    P: WHAT? It looks like a bunion!

    AI: It's terminal. Adjust your will & throw yourself under a bus immediately.

    P: Are you sure?

    AI: Terminal. Will. Bus. Now.

    (The patient wanders away sobbing in destraught dejection.)

    AI: Just kidding. It's a bunion. Hello? Hello? Must have lost the connection. Ok, next patient!


    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Makes perfect sense

      In a country that treats its people like cannon fodder.

      1. Youngone Silver badge

        Re: Makes perfect sense

        Do you mean China or America?

  2. that one in the corner Bronze badge

    Good thing we kept xeyes

    After all the arguments whether xeyes should be removed (because it is useless), we now realise that it just needed to be spruced up and given the AI gloss!

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Good thing we kept xeyes

      Reminds me of 790

  3. Claverhouse Silver badge

    To Spy and to Serve

    Could be worse: reading the headline, I assumed Google was somehow involved.

    1. cookieMonster

      Re: To Spy and to Serve

      They will soon, it will be in beta for 5 years then they’ll just kill it off after they get all the data they need

    2. ecofeco Silver badge

      Re: To Spy and to Serve

      Same difference really.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "replace an actual medical professional"

    Let me enlighten you:

    "This thing can save 20% of our nurses' time!"

    "Aah, so you mean we can sack 20% of our nurses and cream off the salaries for the investor dividends!"

    Welcome to the modern world of healthcare.

    1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

      Re: "replace an actual medical professional"

      Nurses, plural ?

      What kind of fantasy world do you live in. There will be one nurse per hospital (requirement was one nurse per ward but we got a management consultant to classify the entire hospital as a single ward) but this will reduce auxiliary care provider assistants by 20% - unless it turns out that this machine is more expensive than an auxiliary care assistant unit

  5. Mike 137 Silver badge

    "also comes with an emergency button so it can help users if they fall"

    Provided they fall near enough and can reach up to the screen from where they landed (and find the button under those circumstances).

    It's amazing to me how little thought about actual use cases goes into so many of these devices.

    1. Metro-Gnome

      Re: "also comes with an emergency button so it can help users if they fall"

      Its a minimally viable product. Or perhaps even a minimising viability product.

    2. JDPower666 Bronze badge

      Re: "also comes with an emergency button so it can help users if they fall"

      You're assuming the button is on the device, not a separate remote button to be kept about your person (as is already used for vulnerable elderly people)

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: "also comes with an emergency button so it can help users if they fall"

        Even if its a separate device it's useless unless it included an accelerometer to detect falls. If it does they are going to have to have a way of dealing with confused people who have just dropped the device.Any system which doesn't deal with a non-responsive, fallen patient is worthless.

        1. JDPower666 Bronze badge

          Re: "also comes with an emergency button so it can help users if they fall"

          Not useless, it can/is used to alert help in the event of a fall. Yes it's no help if a patient is unconscious, but many elderly people die as a result of falling in their home and being unable to get up. So it may not prevent all fall related deaths, but it's saves a significant proportion. Why anyone would see that as a negative is bizarre. Its the equivalent of saying cars shouldn't have airbags cos some people still die in crashes.

    3. Jason Bloomberg

      Re: "also comes with an emergency button so it can help users if they fall"

      It's amazing to me how little thought about actual use cases goes into so many of these devices.

      Like 'Dementia Clocks' which invariably have small buttons tucked round the back so there's no easy way for a victim to terminate the "take your medicine" announcements. They aren't cheap, are quite expensive when including the additional functionality which is of no practical use.

    4. sebacoustic

      Re: "also comes with an emergency button so it can help users if they fall"

      If the AI spots the fall maybe it can then display the 4chan troll face instead of xeyes, for some light comic relief.

  6. disgruntled yank


    "Just why designers went for floating eyes rather than something more human is not explained. Nor is how a baby boomer might react to having their autumn years overseen by a cartoon figure."

    Can't help you with the first. As for the second, the reaction would include disassembly and removal--careful if the object was not insolent, possibly involving a baseball bat otherwise.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Explaining

      "That's whats cool about working with computers. They don't argue, they remember everything, and they don’t drink all your beer." - Paul Leary

  7. Stuart Castle Silver badge

    Imagine waking up one morning. It’s dark, and you look toward your bedside cabinet. Straight into a pair of huge cartoon eyes apparently watching you, That’d be terrifying.

    1. Paul Hovnanian Silver badge

      "That’d be terrifying."

      Nah. That's just my anime girlfriend pillow.

    2. SVD_NL

      Demented idea

      That would be terrifying to most of us already.

      Now imagine someone with dementia, they are already confused about time and place every time they wake up, and now they also have these piercing floating eyes looking at them.

      "You seem distressed! How can I help?" It says.

      "Please don't that is critic...." It says, before promptly being smashed, possibly followed by a very bad time for the nurses on shift.

      What makes it even more incredible to me, is the massive amount of research that's already been done in this field. Just a quick search for research papers and you'll get thousands of credible sources that tested what does, and what does not work. I'm pretty sure that the general tendency is: the more cuddly, cute, and familiar, the better it works. This is neither cuddly, cute nor familiar for the elderly.

      To me this product looks like it's never even been looked at by a HCI expert, never been properly tested with actual patients, or even medical workers, and just went straight from POC to press release.

      Come on Tencent, you've got the cash, just put in that little bit of extra effort, and you can do amazing things.

  8. Kevin McMurtrie Silver badge
    Big Brother

    This is the trial run

    It will be mandatory in all homes soon. For your health and safety, of course.

    1. Zolko Silver badge

      Re: This is the trial run

      exactly what I thought too

      Millennium Technology Services (MTS)'s subsidiary Invincible Technology

      if THAT doesn't ring all the alarm bells !?!?

  9. ecofeco Silver badge

    Nice gimmick!

    What a pant load of bollocks. Give me an effing break. Utterly useless landfill shite.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Nice gimmick!

      "What a pant load of bollocks. Give me an effing break. Utterly useless landfill shite."

      Don't hold back ..... let me know what you really think !!!


      P.S. Totally agree !!!

    2. Zolko Silver badge

      Re: Nice gimmick!

      Utterly useless

      for you, yes, but for the New World Order, after the Great Reset, this is a blessing. Never assume you're the only game of a hunt.

  10. Roger Kynaston Silver badge

    Not creepy. At all!

    I am sure The Saj here in Blighty will love the idea of these so he can sack all the GPs.

    It is a bit ROTM hence icon

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Not creepy. At all!

      Saj is perfectly happy to have more GP's as long as they are wage slaves for an American health Care company not owners of their own group practice, that's far too socialist for him.

      I'm currently a patient at a wonderful group practice covering a number of villages from 3 surgeries. As so many of the partners are at retirement age I'm dreading them selling it.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Reminds me of the Dell "See If I Care" program 20 years ago.....

    I had the dubious honour of managing the program - it was actually called Custom Factory Integration, and the Customer Care function would have been known as CFI Care. Thankfully I helped to shut it down fairly rapidly, as the business case was terrible ;)

    Oh blimey, remnants of it still exist on the web....

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