Tuesday, May 12, 2020


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Spot the robot is reminding parkgoers in Singapore to keep their distance from one another. ⠀ At a time when simply sharing space with a fellow human being can be a dangerous activity, many governments, airports, and hospitals are discovering the non-contagious delights of robots, which can be deployed to clean surfaces and deliver goods without fear.⠀ ⠀ Their latest deployment comes from Singapore, where municipal authorities are using Boston Dynamics’ four-legged Spot robot to remind park visitors to keep a safe distance from one another. Starting today, a Spot unit will patrol the city’s Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park as part of a two-week trial, broadcasting prerecorded messages “to remind park visitors to observe safe distancing measures.”⠀ ⠀ The robot is fitted with cameras that will be used to estimate the number of visitors to the park, but Singapore’s National Parks Board (NParks) says it won’t collect personal data or use the video to identify individuals. Spot is remotely controlled, but it has built-in sensors to stop collisions and will be accompanied by a guide. If the trial is successful, NParks says the robot could be deployed full-time during peak hours in the park.⠀ ⠀ —TheVerge

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