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RI-MAN, the soft and cuddly robot

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With a Pillsbury Doughboy pucker sure to delight any granny, RI-MAN is the latest lifestyle-support robot destined to care for Japan's elderly. The 5-foot 2-inch, 220-pound RI-MAN features plush arms and chest perched atop a wheeled base. A 5-milimeter layer of soft silicone covers 320 pressure sensors jacketing most of the upper body including the face, arms, and chest. This allows it to perform such delicate work as lifting perplexed patients into its arms where presumably it will whisper little “coo-coo” sounds prior to crushing its victim into a liquid fuel beverage – which of course all robots will do once they obtain consciousness, right?

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