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I look at this robot-baby and I can't find, at least in the image, anything that would convince me to have a baby. Could it be that this baby simulator who cries, whines and even runs like real babies, will they push them to have a baby of flesh and blood? Can a robot baby make the Japanese reproduce?
Yotaro is the name that the Japanese chose to give the robot-baby they created to solve their birth problems. Yotaro cries, laughs and gets to kick his "legs" when you tickle him. Sneeze and runny nose. And be calm if you sing him a song. This baby simulator was designed to sensitize young Japanese couples, and attract them to childbearing, as Japan has one of the lowest birth rates of any industrialized country.
Yotaro's face is made of a soft silicone rubber that shows different facial expressions, projected onto him through a hidden projector inside the baby. The robot uses sensors on its rattle, on its stomach and on its clothes, to detect when it is being touched and thus be able to react by moving its limbs, changing its expression, smiling or crying. A hot water tank can release water through the tear ducts and nostrils for added realism. Although it looks nothing like a real baby, researchers at the University of Tsukuba, responsible for this invention, point out that Yotaro can help and encourage new parents to have personal contact and enjoy the joys of caring for a baby. Will this be the best way to solve the aging problem of the Japanese population? I don't know, but I think that all the research time and all the expenditure spent could be used in another type of more important project, right?Vilma Medina. Editor of our site
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