Pollen-sniffing robots put on duty in Japan

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Donald Melanson
January 29, 2008 11:11 PM
Pollen-sniffing robots put on duty in Japan
In yet another example of robots getting the short end of stick, a Japanese weather forecasting company is set to deploy a swarm of some 200 pollen-sniffing robots throughout the country, which will warn us humans of any impeding pollen-related dangers (and no doubt scare a few unsuspecting animals in the process). As you can see, the robots are of the spherical variety, and measure a scant one foot across and weigh in at about 2.2 pounds. Sticking true to creepy robot conventions, they also boast glowing eyes, which light up in one of five different colors to indicate the level of pollen in the air. Somewhat curiously, that information takes a rather roundabout way back to the company's headquarters, with 200 allergy suffers volunteering to keep watch on the robots and rely their status back to the company.
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