Companion Robots: An Example Of The Accelerating Power Of COVID-19

Hanson Robotics wants to help those craving company during the COVID-19 pandemic. For those not familiar with Sophia, it is a human-like robot from Hanson Robotics. For those not familiar, check out the video below. Sophia appears between the 2:10 and 5:30 marks of the 8-minute segment. In discussing the roll of companion robots, CEO David Hanson told Reuters that “Sophia and Hanson robots are unique by being so human-like, that can be so useful during these times where people are terribly lonely and socially isolated.” His company, Hanson Robotics, plans to roll out thousands of these robots in 2021. They aim to roll out four models — including Sophia — in the first half of 2021.

The company is taking advantage of the accelerating impact of the pandemic on automation and robotics. This recent Article describes both the fame achieved by the robot, and the controversy it has created. This specific dynamic represents a phenomenon likely to dominate discussions during this decade: how will society react to these advancements? When watching Sophia in the video, can you see the robot as a companion for the lonely? Given the mental health issues facing society, should we dismiss or embrace it? After the video below, I have included a poll – please participate.

Explore other pandemic topics via the links below.

FEATUREDA Post Pandemic Society

7 thoughts on “Companion Robots: An Example Of The Accelerating Power Of COVID-19

  1. […] In 2014, predictions regarding advanced automation were rooted in the belief that the divide between humans and machines was narrowing, driving the idea that ultimately, machines will replace, augment, or work alongside humans. Nothing has happened to change that perspective and the pandemic may have accelerated attainment. While knowledge work and creativity has long been the domain of humans, much has happened in seven years to call that in to question. Examples of machines encroaching on our more human characteristics were described in an example of a Virtual Composer, a Robot Artist, and a Social Companion. […]

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