Research on Robotics in Japan: Achievements, Prospects and Applications

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Nowadays, technology is a dominant feature in the lives of people around the world. Most of daily life activities involve the use of technology which is expanding every day through scientific innovations. However, such innovations do not always occur in every part of the world, but mostly in technologically developed countries, such as South Korea, the USA and Japan. Presently, the development of robotics science has become a subject of considerable attention in those countries. According to Weng, Chen and Sun (2009, 267), “Technocrats from many developed countries, especially Japan and South Korea, are preparing for the human–robot co-existence society that they believe will emerge by 2030.” The word “robot” was introduced in the beginning of 1920th by the Czech playwright Karel Capek from the Czech word “robota”, meaning “forced labor” (Robertson 2007, 373). According to Robertson (2007, 373), robot, in practical usage, can be defined as an autonomous or semiautonomous device that is used to perform its tasks either controlled by human, fractionally controlled and with human guidance or regardless of external actions that are performed by people. Regrettably, the majority of robots in the past centuries could not operate without human control and intervention. However, the progress in robotics over the past few decades enabled humanity to achieve soaring results in creation of autonomous humanoid robots.

The purpose of this paper is to discuss the development of robotics science in modern society, its progress and future prospects, with specific reference to Japan. It will introduce the history of robotics in Japan, analyse motivations for entering the robotics sphere and determine benefits and concerns together with ident...

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...February 13, 2011).

Robertson, J. 2007. Robo Sapiens Japanicus: Humanoid robots and the Posthuman family. Critical Asian Studies 39(3): 369-398. EBSCOhost (accessed January 21, 2011).

Šabanovi´c, S. 2010. Robots in Society, Society in Robots. International Journal of Social Robotics 2 (4): 439-450 Springer (accessed February 13, 2011).

Sato, T., R. Mizoguchi, Y. Tomita and T. Uchiyama. 2009. Overview of the Academic Roadmap of Robotics Technology. Advanced Robotics 23(11): 1429-1439. EBSCOhost (accessed January 21, 2011).

Weng, Y-H., C-H. Chen and C-T. Sun. 2009. Toward the Human–Robot Co-Existence Society: On Safety Intelligence for Next Generation Robots. International Journal of Social Robotics 1 (4): 267-282 Springer (accessed February 13, 2011).

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