A cafe whose staff is made up entirely of robot waiters being controlled by paralyzed employees is currently undergoing a trial opening in Tokyo, Japan.
When the idea of robots performing everyday tasks on our behalf first started to be discussed, many likely wondered how far that idea would go. Some people even feared that if we took the idea too far, robots would become so powerful that they would overthrow and replace humans altogether. A whacky thought, but one that some definitely worried about.
Now robots play a big role in big chunks of our lives, and there is probably less worry that they will hurt us. However, there is the issue that some believe robots are performing many of the jobs once done by men and women. It's not exactly overthrowing our civilization, but some would argue it is having a negative effect on the human race in a number of ways.
We have some good news on that front though, courtesy of Sora News 24. A group of robots in Tokyo has created jobs for people who were otherwise unable to work. The robots are OriHime-Ds and are the staff of a cafe in the Japanese capital called Dawn ver.β. What makes this cafe so unique is that these robots are powered by disabled people who wouldn't be able to do the job otherwise.
The four-feet-tall Orihime Ds is manned remotely by employees suffering from various disabilities that have left them paralyzed. The system in place even allows those who can only move their eyes to work the robot waiters. Pretty remarkable, and it has brought about job opportunities for 10 staff members, with conditions such as ALS and spinal cord injuries.
As the name of the cafe suggests, Dawn is not open full time just yet. It was open between November 26th and 30th, and again from December 3rd to 7th. If all goes to plan, then the hope is that Dawn will be a permanent fixture in Tokyo by 2020. Plus, beyond that, perhaps it will have other branches throughout Japan and the world. It is a novel idea and one that offers paralyzed people a chance to work and be more independent.