WATB#; In praise of Robots Which Make Life Easier for the Poorest

At the end of every month, we bloggers are given the opportunity to search for and post good news stories, of which there are many, as an antidote to the mountainous tide of darkness in the news feeds.

My co-hosts for this month are: Belinda Witzenhausen, Sylvia McGrath, Sylvia Stein Shilpa Garg, Eric Lahti . . . . . . . . . . .. Please check out their posts

I offer the following contribution this month

Robot Becomes Part of the Community After Easing Daily Burden of Water Collection in Remote Village


This good news story captured my eye because its the right application of robotics. Too often we see robots of all kinds featured in stories and situations where they are causing harm-by taking over jobs previously done by humans for example- or applied in frivolous capacities. But just think of this story in which they are liberating villagers from an essential yet onerous daily task of carrying water from the well to the village, and in return the villages have included the automaton with membership of their families


Robot Becomes Part of the Community After Easing Daily Burden of Water Collection in Remote Villag


Robot Becomes Part of the Community After Easing Daily Burden of Water Collection in Remote Village

While most people tend to picture robots in a modern environment, this intrepid four-wheeled robot traveled to India so it could help families in remote villages.Dr. Amol Deshmukh, a computer scientist at the University of Glasgow, wanted to study how technology could help low-income villagers living in the rural countryside. After visiting the village of Ayyampathy in southern India last November, Deshmukh and his team sent “Husky” the robot to help the villagers with the daily task of water-gathering.Since more than half of the Indian population is without tap water or plumbing, citizens will often spend hours hiking across treacherous terrain so they can collect water from a well.
Husky, on the other hand, is a remote-controlled social robot that specializes in carrying large amounts of water across varied terrain.With the help of eleven village volunteers, Husky was able to carry three 20-liter jugs of water from the well back to the village. The robot emitted a male-sounding synthetic voice to thank the villagers for their help and tell them where to put the water. It even reminded them to wash their hands before their next meal.In addition to studying how technology could help the village, the researchers wanted to see how villagers from remote areas would interact with such a foreign object – and their findings were quite favorable.Deshmukh said: “Most of the research carried out to date on human-robot interactions are carried out in lab environments in urban settings, with people who have developed some conception of what robots are and how they work by seeing depictions of them in TV and film.“We wanted to see how people from considerably more remote rural populations would view robots, which have a lot of labour-saving potential. Robot helpers are also ideally-placed to help those population reach the UN’s sustainable development goals of bridging the digital divide and opening up beneficial technology to people around the world, so it’s vital to explore how they are likely to be perceived in the developing world.”Deshmukh added: “After several days of using the Husky, we surveyed each of the participants about their perceptions of the robot and how helpful they found it.“Every one of them said the robot made their lives easier, and they unanimously reported that they enjoyed working with the robot. Interestingly, they were also unanimous on the robot being ‘alive’, despite being aware that it was being controlled remotely.

“We also asked if they thought the robot had a gender. More than a third of participants perceived it as ‘female’ although it communicated with a male-sounding voice and had no other gender-coded features, primarily because water-carrying is done mainly by women in their village.“It’s clear that labour-saving devices like these bring real benefits to remote communities, and we’re keen to do more work in the future with our partners in India to explore these issues in more depth.”

6 thoughts on “WATB#; In praise of Robots Which Make Life Easier for the Poorest

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Carmel Bendon - author

Writing tales of then and now and the in-between

A Rose Is A Rose Is A Rose!

Things are as they are, not as they should be!


Ovo nije sve


Transform your life with Astrology

L'actualité de Lunesoleil

L'art de l'astrologie intuitive


The Cricket Pages

Justine Kibler Photography

Wedding photographer in Buckinghamshire

That’s So Jacob

random thoughts 'n things from the life of jacob


reflections on life as an house sitter and perpetual traveller

charles french words reading and writing

An exploration of writing and reading

A window to my house

Metaphorically speaking that is, let’s not get creepy.

Through Open Lens

Home of Lukas Kondraciuk Photography

Word Craft ~ Prose and Poetry

Colleen M. Chesebro ~ Novelist, Prose Metrist, & Word Witch

⚡️La Audacia de Aquiles⚡️

"El Mundo Visible es Sólo un Pretexto" / "The Visible World is Just a Pretext".-

Denise Covey - Writer

Words inspired by dreams, coffee and travel

The Renegade Press

Tales from the mouth of a wolf

Perspective Art

Surreal Landscapes by Maikhail Buzhinskiy

The sea and me

Dr. K. A. Acharya

%d bloggers like this: