January 30, 2008

Allergy-analyzing robots invade Tokyo

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pollen_robots.jpgInvading Japan for further analysis, a swarm of 200 robots are taking to the skies. In preparation for forecasting pollen levels, Weathernews, Inc. is sending out what looks like enlarged ping pong balls with embedded LEDs.

"[They] weigh 1 kilogram (2.2 lbs) and measure 30 centimeters (1 ft) across, consist of a monitoring unit housed in a spherical styrofoam shell. A pair of eyes glow 5 different colors — white, blue, green, red and purple — to indicate the level of Japanese cedar and cypress pollen in the air."

Called Pollen Robots, the spherical bots monitor and provide up-to-the-minute pollen reports and maps online.


I'd be nervous. They look eerily similar to the pieces of GLaDOS that we had to throw into the incinerator in Portal.

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