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Wednesday, November 23, 2011
Korean Robots Help Prevent Dementia
I have to admit I read that headline more than once, and the article too. Sounds like another instance of truth being stranger than fiction.
From Arirang, Korea's Global TV:
Meet Silbut, a robot designed to ward off Alzheimer's disease.
It's running a sing-along class and asking the attendants to fill in the blanks of the lyrics. Another robot dubbed Mero tells a story making various and subtle facial expressions. It gives compliments for correct answers and even makes jokes.
All of you here today look so nice. You're also good at answering the quizes.
This is a pilot class for training the brain using robots developed by the Korea Institute of Science and Technology. The aim is to prevent dementia by stimulating the brain with games.
"Due to aging, I tend to forget things a lot these days. I was wondering what I could do to prevent that and having tried this program, I think it's great."
At the moment, there are 16 games developed for seniors in their 60s to 70s. They are specifically designed to stimulate the three areas of the brain that are in charge of decision-making, making calculations and storing memory.
Under the program, these participants will take an evaluation test in December which marks the third month of training. The test results will be used to determine the level of progress in cognitive ability.
Recently, the authorities have sent 8 robots to Finland and Denmark after signing a collaborative agreement. And after a local three-month program and assessment, hopes are high that the Korean-made robots will make inroads into the overseas market.
"The robots are cost-effective and productive. For instance high skilled workers would not be able to go and care for seniors in remote areas. In such cases, robots could take their place."
As the next project, KIST plans to develop robots for the specially challenged children and for science education.Read at original source.
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