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Children at Starship dance with robot

November 8, 2004

Children at Starship dance with the world's most advanced robot

Children and staff at Starship Children's Health watched in awe as ASIMO, the world's most advanced humanoid robot, performed for them today.

ASIMO stands for Advanced Step in Innovative Mobility and has been developed by a team of Honda scientists and engineers over the last two decades.

The four foot tall robot moved smoothly around Starship's playground and danced with the children using Intelligent Real-Time Flexible Walking, otherwise known as i-WALK. i-Walk features a movement control that allows ASIMO to predict the next movement to make in real time.

ASIMO boasts a people-friendly design and in the future may have a variety of uses in hospitals and in people's daily lives, such as bringing medicine to a sick person or carrying objects up a flight of stairs.

"If I had my own ASIMO I'd make him clean my room and play game boy with me - so that I could win," said 9-year-old Shaun Rees, who watched the show.

"ASIMO is unbelievable to watch - you really have to see to appreciate what a technological marvel Honda has achieved. We hope in the future that ASIMO may be able to help with important jobs, like assisting the elderly or a person confined to a bed or a wheelchair or perform certain tasks that are dangerous to humans, such as moving harmful chemicals," said Graeme Seymour, Managing Director at Honda New Zealand.

ASIMO can be seen showcasing skills at the Big Boys Toys lifestyle exhibition at the Auckland Showgrounds, Greenlane, Auckland November 12th - 14th, 2004. ASIMO will be performing five times a day.

"At four feet tall, ASIMO is very cute, and I know Kiwis are really going to love seeing ASIMO. Not only will they witness a technological marvel, but they will enjoy a fun and entertaining show," said Kirstie Baker, Honda's ASIMO New Zealand Project Manager.


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