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Miscellaneous/Robots 080424
 (February 2007)  To Be Almost Human Or Not To Be, That Is The Question
From Electronic Design, Feb 15 2007, pp. 37-40

As scientists meet the challenge of having robots perform services for people, the degree of human like perception is challenged. Dr. Hiroshi Ishiguro of the Osaka University, believes the android robot should be as human like as possible to gain acceptance. Honda thinking is to make the humanoid robots  look artificial while carrying out needed human support functions. The Japanese are targeting humanoid robots as personal care assistants primarily for the elderly. Honda expects to commercialize the ASIMO type of humanoid within 10 years, while the more human-like androids may take 50 years. (Ed. note:  With the long development time, robot battery manufacturers need not tool up for many years. What level of robot sophistication will be needed to manufacture the humanoid batteries? With the technology of today, Lithium-ion would be the most likely candidate, but with the long time frame is there a market here for fuel cells?)