Could Japan become the host of world's greatest oasis for retired people, where robots cater their every need?
A Japanese startup called Cyberdyne, Inc. developed a Robot Suit HAL® to aid humans in various fields of life, such as medicine, caregiving, welfare, labor, heavy works, and entertainment. It is now planning to build an entire ''city'' relying on robot helpers, working in the medical, as well as industrial and agricultural industries.
Hybrid Assistive Limb® (HAL® for short) is a cyborg-type robot that "improves, supports and enchances wearer's bodily functions." The exoskeleton is said to be the first robotics device ever to receive government approval as a medical device (for diseases including spinal muscular atrophy and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis) in Japan, while it was already approved as such in Europe earlier.
The project is called Cybernetic City. Being built in Tsukuba city with approximately 223,000 residents and headquarters of Cyberdyne Inc., it will lie next to a massive science park Tsukuba Science City. It will take up 84,057 square meters of land, where developers intend to build homes for the elderly, topped with a research center, a hospital, a plaza and a park - and robots to help the elderly with their everyday life.
Cyberdyne Inc. President and a professor at the University of Tsukuba, Yoshiyuki Sankai, stated that the company "wants to make visible progress in the project by the 2020 Tokyo Olympics."