Nao Humanoid robots preparing for a game of football (via RoboCup)
With the 2014 Robot Olympics in Brazil already over, Tokyo has decided to declare it's ambitious plans for the 2020 Olympics. The Prime Minister of Japan, Shinzo Abe, has made a decision to show off Tokyo's already impressive robotics technology during the 2020 Olympic games by further investments and a simultaneous Robot Olympics. I can see it now - 'on the high-beam, R2-D2.'
Abe plans to triple the robotics industry to 2.4 trillion yen (over $20 billion) by 2020 to rock our socks off with robots that can compete in an Olympic arena. Either that, or he is planning to actually create the race of super-robots that will take over the world in an I, Robot, Will Smith, movie-esque way.
Abe hopes to make robotics a main pillar of the economic growth and stability of Japan. And what a better way to make a splash than to make autonomous robots compete on a global scale.
There are no real details on the Robot Olympics as of now, but I suppose it is hoping to become a bigger success of than the 2014 RoboCup. With continual advances in technology, who knows, maybe the Robot Olympics will actually be a sight to behold.
RoboCup Junior competition (via RoboCup)
Currently, the RoboCup is very cute, but exceptionally less epic than it sounds. The 2014 RoboCup in Brazil had robots of all shapes and sizes compete in games of football. While it certainly marked a lovely day for international collaboration and robotic engineering, it was hardly as exciting as the world cup. It reminded me of when I filmed an international firefighting competition, which involved me watching robots epically fail for 6 hours straight. Of course, most of them could put out a candle, but they were typically defeated by cardboard walls. Ah, gotta love robots.
Still, there are some pretty impressive robots on the scene that have some pretty epic dance moves. This huge influx of investment could allow Tokyo to host an entertaining Robot Olympics. Personally, I would like to see a robot dance battle or a cook-off. That would be impressive and entertaining, for at least 6 seconds.
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