(PhysOrg.com) -- Have you ever wished you could be the devil on someones shoulder? Or maybe you are more the angel type? Either way, short of actually being on that persons shoulder, whispering in their ear, you can't fulfill your dream. For one thing, it would cause a lot of neck injuries.
Then again, maybe it won't. Thanks to a team of researchers at Keio University and Japan's Advanced Telecommunications Research Institute you may be able to literally be on the shoulder of the person you want to influence. They have created a shoulder-mounted telepresence robot that can allow you to hang out with your friends while you sit in front of the TV at home.
Once the little guy is on your friends shoulder you sign into a video chat, via Skype, and you can see what is going on from about the same point of view as your friend, allowing you to shop, mock peoples outfits, and possibly even date by telepresence, at least that is what the researchers hope. This reporter does not see the dating aspect of this plan working out well. Even though the shoulder bot, named TEROOS, can make a variety of expressions to help him convey emotions, there are some things essential to romance that this bot simply cannot do, or that you may not want to do with a robot. Even the goodnight kiss becomes a challenge when you date by bot.
In order to facilitate a genuine experience the user has complete control of the robots camera, which can rotate 360 degrees and the bot is only equipped with a directional speaker, so everyone in the area will not be forced to hear your conversation. The sound comes out more like a loud whisper. The bot can also be controlled by Bluetooth on a smart phone.
No word yet on how much the shoulder mounted bot will be.
Explore further: Congress gets mixed advice on regulating drones