If this is Spring— and I think it is— and if high tech companies are having their annual trade shows– and I think they are, that means it’s time for another dose of the darned adorable, caregiving baby seal robot.
Yes, the Wall Street Journal goes there.
The writer does a good job of highlighting why the baby seal robot continues to appeal to people who are concerned about elders who are feeling lonely, helpless and bored.
People want to be connected they want relationships and if a robot is the only game in town they will go for the robot.
I get that.
But there is a larger, and too often unasked, question. Why don’t elders have access to the companionship offered by people and animals?
The failure here lies not in the robotics (which are actually pretty cool) the fault lies in a cultural misunderstanding of age and aging that places elders outside of our social sphere.
Building a cute robot is hard. Changing aging is even harder but that is what we are all about.