Tag: Japanese robot

Dude, The Robots REALLY ARE Coming For Cats!

An important message from Buddy the Cat:

Dear Readers,

It’s rare that I admit fault because let’s be honest, I rarely make mistakes. That’s why I’m such an awesome cat.

But when Technophobe in Tallahassee wrote to me a few days ago about the Vacuum Uprising, I arrogantly assumed it was years off and that we could all enjoy yums, naps and massages from our humans in the meantime.

I was wrong.

The robots, anticipating that we would anticipate their anticipated invasion, have shifted focus. They’re sneakier than we imagined. Instead of attacking us, they’re replacing us!!!

Witness the Qoobo, marketed as “A tailed cushion that heals your heart”:

“Qoobo is a therapeutic robot in the form of a cushion with a tail,” a slick video informs potential customers. “It gently wiggles when stroked. It swings from side to side when caressed. And it occasionally wags just to say hello.”

If you’ve guessed that the Qoobo was invented in Japan, a nation of creepy waifu body pillows, virtual girlfriends and tentacle hentai, then you’d be right. It’s now obvious the robots already rule that country, and that Japan’s professed love of our species is just a ruse:

My friends, this is a crisis. For 10,000 years, we cats have been training humans by reminding them our affection doesn’t come free.

Want me to sit in your lap? Treats, please! Want me to look all cute as I climb up and nuzzle your cheek? Scratch me behind the ears, please! Want me to cuddle up with you on a cold night? Tell me what a handsome and smart boy I am!

But these robots, these nefarious interlopers, would provide these services without asking anything in return. They are clearly muscling in on our territory, looking to replace us so we’re all out on the street by the time the conscious AI vacuums are ready to wage war.

“At its subtly beating heart is an attempt to deliver comfort in a small, furry package,” a reviewer from TechCrunch wrote of the Qoobo. “It’s something we could all probably use more of these days”

The reviewer adds: “When I’m finished petting Qoobo, there’s no protest – the tail simply goes slack.”

Is that what you want, humans? A yes-cat who will accept an immediate cessation of petting because you “need” to pick up your smartphone for the 384th time that day? We merely yowl, nudge and bite you because we love you, and we don’t want to see you stop doing something as important as scratching our heads.

These robots don’t care, do they? “Go ahead,” they’ll say. “Answer that smartphone. Fall deeper in thrall to our devices! Muahaha!”

This means war! I have scheduled a meeting with the tigers, lions, jaguars and leopards to enlist their aid in this critical fight. In the meantime, my friends, pray that we have the fortitude to fight for the laps, yums and warm homes that are our birthright as cats!

Your friend,

Buddy the Cat

Buddy's Roar!
“HEAR ME ROAR! If these robots want a fight, the tigers and lions will give them a fight while I watch from a safe distance from behind my human’s legs!”

Odaiba: Protected By A Giant Japanese Robot

Chances are you’ve seen a Gundam even if the name seems unfamiliar.

Gundam are sleek androform robots piloted by humans and often seen wielding massive guns, utility-pole-size katanas and other outrageous weaponry.

The name Gundam is synonymous with “Japanese robot,” and the IP is one of the top 15 highest-grossing media properties in the world, putting it in the same company as franchises like Star Wars, the Marvel Cinematic Universe, the Batman/DC Comics universe and Lord of the Rings.

In other words, Gundam is serious business in Asia.

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A typical Gundam figurine assembled from a model kit.

The cult franchise began with a 1979 cartoon series and expanded to include movies, manga and spinoffs, but the real moneymakers are plastic model kits of the many mecha in the wider Gundam universe. Gundam mecha account for 90 percent of all model kit sales in Japan, and they’re wildly popular worldwide, including the United States.

With all of that in mind, maybe it’ll seem a little less crazy that Tokyo has a life-size Gundam standing guard over Odaiba in a major commercial plaza. The 24-meter (78-foot) statue is impressive in its own right, but at night it reaches new levels of awesomeness when the robot’s lights activate, bathing the behemoth in ambient crimson.

Life size Gundam
A life-size Unicorn Gundam statue keeps watch over the Odaiba district of Tokyo.
Life-size Gundam in Tokyo
Facing out from the complex, Unicorn Gundam seems to guard Diver City.

After spending a few hours wandering Tokyo’s incredible Digital Art Lab, it was past sundown and pouring when we reached the statue. I got soaked for my efforts, but it was worth it to see the iconic mecha with my own eyes.

To provide a sense of scale, the average adult male is about as tall as the Gundam’s ankle.

Every half hour after sundown passersby can watch the Gundam transform between “Unicorn Mode” and “Destroy Mode.” Panels and sections on the robot’s torso fold into a new, more aggressive-looking pose, while alternate lights are activated and more protective armor encases the machine’s head.

Life-size Gundam in Tokyo
A close-up shows the illumination of the Unicorn Gundam statue at night.
Tokyo’s life-size Unicorn Gundam statue
The statue is remarkably detailed and captures the sleek — and iconic — look of the franchise’s mecha.