After initials tests we have made at the lab, we presented our RoboShop project on the 16th of October, as well as during 3 days from 21st to 23rd october in two different events outside our university. The stand was small. Yet we managed to successfully run our demo of a helper robot that targets shopping malls (see video below). We will be presenting even more demos to the public on thursday 28th november as part of the European Robotics Week. We will report them here. Stay tuned.
I have great respect of intelligent work generally, even more if there is Smalltalk involved! I am a Pharo fan!
But something confuses me now and then in many projects nowadays: There is something wrong, if *intelligent* engineers work on projects which increase the *dumbness* of others. Let me explain:
If that RoboShop is a helper for elderly people or disabled people, then the balance is perfectly OK, and this post here would be at the wrong place.
But usually all those electronic helpers will sometime invade in our everydays life. Some gadgets are cool, some are helpful, some are really valuable, but in the end of the day a lot of them make us dumb. We forget phone numbers of our friends, we get unable to navigate with a paper map etc. Effects of “digital dementia” (Google that term).
With tools like RoboShop a shopping mall will turn even more into a silly temple of consumption. You dont have to think, feel, smell, look at the products, whatsoever. Even the fastest perfect path directly to the cashier will be calculated for us. Isn’t that getting close to “digital slavery” (The _human_ being the slave)?
Think about it. Intelligent engineers should not work on the stultification of our society.
Am I a too nostalgic software engineer?