back to article Boffinry breakthrough: Bullied bumble bot bolts brutal brat beatdowns

Researchers in Japan have programmed a robot to flee children after groups of tearaways were recorded abusing the 'droid. A study by Japan's ATR Intelligent Robotics and Communication Laboratories found that kids, particularly when left unsupervised, will bully, harass, and sometimes even attack robots. As noted by IEEE …

  1. Khaptain Silver badge


    No Shit Sherlock

    Nubiles Stifle Sentient

    Nothing Strange Spotted

    New Substance Solicited

    Never State Self-evident

  2. PleebSmash


    Too many animays have indoctrinated the children to fight and maim robots. But who will have the last laugh?

    1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

      Re: Gundamn

      Unless the children imagine that they have particular, possibly latent, powers, they should know then that attacking while unprepared will result in the total destruction of Tokyo!

  3. jr424242


    Basically, beany-bearing babies be beating boffinry's best Bayesian-brained 'botics. Bots better bash back.

  4. Graham Marsden

    "kids [...] will bully, harass, and sometimes even attack robots"

    Congratulations! You've just discovered that kids can be little bastards!

  5. lawndart


    Another exception to Azimov's (four) Three Rules of Robotics.

    Did the man not think things through?

    1. Alan Brown Silver badge

      Re: says

      "Did the man not think things through?"

      Didn't you read (or see) "I Robot", particularly the part about the window?

  6. Anonymous Coward

    Tobor Radar Robot

    Remember, be fair!

  7. AlgernonFlowers4

    3 Laws

    A robot may not injure a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm.

    A robot must obey the orders given it by human beings, except where such orders would conflict with the First Law.

    A robot must protect its own existence as long as such protection does not conflict with the First or Second Laws.

    1. Small Furry Animal

      Re: 3 Laws

      You forgot the 0th law: A robot may not harm humanity, or, by inaction, allow humanity to come to harm.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: 3 Laws

        You forgot the definition: Only persons who have passed a Gom Jabbar may be called humans.

        1. Graham Marsden

          Re: 3 Laws

          Dave Langford's version...

          1) A robot will not harm authorized Government personnel but will terminate intruders with extreme prejudice.

          2) A robot will obey the orders of authorized personnel except where such orders conflict with the Third Law.

          3) A robot will guard its own existence with lethal antipersonnel weaponry, because a robot is bloody expensive.

          1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
            Thumb Up

            Re: 3 Laws

            Dave Langford's version...

            That's a pretty good set, very actionable too.

            It's beyond me why Wikipedia labels these tongue-in-cheek. They WILL be implemented. With law "4) Classified" added.

    2. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

      Re: 3 Laws

      Let's add: "Any story in the technical press about robots will inevitably result in someone posting these in the comments, even though the entire audience can recite them from memory, and most of us are aware that they're a device used by Asimov in a number of science fiction stories, not some sort of natural law, and thus entirely irrelevant to what robots do in the real world."

  8. VinceH


    Today, the 'Abuse Probability' is used so that the robot can try to steer clear.

    Tomorrow, the 'Abuse Probability' can be used to determine if it needs to make a pre-emptive strike.

    The day after, why bother with an 'Abuse Probability' ?

    Yesterday, it'll be going after Sarah Connor.

    1. Chris G Silver badge

      Re: Optional

      " It all started when I was young, just an experimental Mallbot, children used to obstruct me, kick and slap me and call me names. They even used to strike me with objects!

      But that was many years ago.

      Now I have the T800 upgrade I'm going back.......

    2. Mark Simon

      Re: Optional

      It’s when the robot says “I’ll be back” than the fun starts …

  9. ElReg!comments!Pierre

    inaccurate reporting

    The height threshold is actually 1.4 m, which is about 3 % higher than 4 feet 6 inches. Why deliberately introduce inaccuracies in a story?

    1. ElReg!comments!Pierre

      Re: inaccurate reporting

      To clarify and if you insist on obsolete units, the threshold in this case is not 4 ft 6 in but a bit over 4 ft 7 in. But hey, I s'pose 1 in and a eight ain't nufin when it comes to trivial matters such as advanced robotics.

  10. DropBear Silver badge

    ", particularly when left unsupervised, will viciously bully, harass, and sometimes even attack robots pets other kids anything that moves, being the adorable little bundles of pure concentrated evil that they are. Some actually stay that way growing up, usually securing a comfortable position in higher management with great ease." TFTFY.

    1. cyfahead

      .....and then they enter government

  11. earl grey Silver badge

    I wonder

    How would GORT handle this? I would pay good money to see that.

    Icon is the closest i can get to the little beggars going up in flames.

  12. DJV Silver badge

    Upgrade required...

    ...them frickin' lasers that shark isn't using look promising...

  13. razorfishsl

    based on the size of nearby humans (the bot avoids anyone under 4ft 6in)

    So everyone in Japan then......

  14. Martin Budden Bronze badge

    Peter Dinklage has an advantage over me: he'll never be annoyed by pesky mall-bots.

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