Future Culture

Futurist Writer Lei Kalina writes her tongue-in-cheek musings and ramblings on the growing worldwide phenomenon of the growth of the Future Culture in the 21st Century

Future Culture In The 21st Century

Future Culture In the 21st Century

Futures Studies, Foresight, or Futurology , according to Wikipedia, is the science, art and practice of postulating possible, probable, and preferable futures and the worldviews and myths that underlie them. Futures studies (colloquially called "Futures" by many of the field's practitioners) seeks to understand what is likely to continue, what is likely to change, and what is novel. Part of the discipline thus seeks a systematic and pattern-based understanding of past and present, and to determine the likelihood of future events and trends. Futures is an interdisciplinary field, studying yesterday's and today's changes, and aggregating and analyzing both lay and professional strategies, and opinions with respect to tomorrow.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

"I'll Be With You In ... 'Robotic Spirit' "

Whew . Don't you just wince and roll your eyes everytime you hear somebody saying that they can't make it to your party, or to your meeting... but will be with you "in spirit " ??

Har, har, har.

Some kind of a hair-raising "out-of-body experience" , or simply a polite excuse , a courteous exit.

But for RoboDynamics Corporation, they're introducing the TILR ( Tele-presence Internet-connected Low cost Robot ) Robotic Telepresence comprised of three distinct components, which include a robot (TiLR), a PC application (TCC), and a Robot Server (RS) .

Check this out.

TiLR - a mobile robot platform almost four feet tall that features a video camera and display. TiLR connects to your organization's wireless network via a standard WiFi connection and can be controlled remotely via TCC.

TiLR Command Center (TCC) - is a software component that installs on almost any PC - and is used in conjunction with a webcam and broadband connection to commandeer TiLR remotely.

Robot Server - is a thin server that maintains the status and locations of robots in your organization and allows user to easily find and connect to robots within your organization.

Robotic Telepresence System

RoboDynamics' report :

TiLR - World's first commercially available Robotic Telepresence Platform

What is Robotic Telepresence?

Robotic Telepresence is the ability to transport yourself to a remote location without going there.

It is similar to video conferencing but whereas video conferencing gives you only a small window into the remote world, Robotic Telepresence gives you a presence, instantly transporting you there and enabling you to move around, look about, and interact with people, objects, and the environment as if you are actually there.

TiLR - Robotic Telepresence vs. Video Conferencing

Our robot, named TiLR (pronounced Tie Ler) has an 8" LCD screen and a powerful Canon camera - providing you with live bi-directional video and audio. As such it brings you face to face with people and objects - and gives you the freedom to move about the remote world from the convenience of your PC - wherever in the world you may be.

TiLR - Robotic Telepresence vs. Video Conferencing

Robotic Telepresence versus Video Conferencing

Video Conferencing Robotic Telepresence

Your sense of presence is limited to the narrow view that a camera provides - often times just a face.

Your ability to move freely about the remote space has the profound psychological effects. Both you and people on the remote end treat you as if you're actually there in person.


all video calls must be scheduled in advance - which is often burdensome, difficult to manage, and essentially downtime.

telepresence sessions happen whenever you want them to happen. No need to waist time scheduling and no need to be tied down to a specific time.


Video conferencing affixes you the specific location where the VC equipment is located - and you can't deviate from that location.

Robotic Telepresence provides the ultimate freedom of mobility, enabling you to move about the entire traversable space of the remote location.


: video conferencing sessions tend to be formal with rigid, prearranged agendas.

Formal and Informal
: with Robotic Telepresence you can have formal interactions as well as informal ones. You can spend the day with your colleagues - be at the water cooler - and work seamlessly with your team even though you're away from the office.


: Video conferencing equipment vary from location to location - even inside an organization. Sessions with outside organizations are even more difficult, as significant upfront work is required to ensure inter-operability of varying systems.

: Connecting to a Telepresence Robot is a matter of installing a software. By nature, anyone can connect to a TiLR with a PC, Webcam, and Broadband connection. No specialized equipment or expertise is necessary.

The rigid nature of video conferencing divides the power of the meeting between participants on both sides. Each side is at the mercy of the other to answer, maintain, and terminate the session.

With Robotic Telepresence the user is empowered to visit and maintain the session at will. It is analogous to you walking down the hall to your colleague's office.

For Crunchgear.com's Devin Coldewey, teleconferencing can be " an impersonal affair — all your subordinates just staring at a laptop screen, and on the screen is a window, and in the window is a smaller screen, and in that smaller screen is your face. So lifelike! You could also do the evil overlord thing where you’re projected all big on the wall (asking for one million dollars). "

"But the approach RoboDynamics wants to popularize is what they call “telepresence,” and it necessitates inhabiting a robotic body in the room. Now, let’s be honest: the notion is a little more grand than the execution. TiLR looks like a riveter robot with a screen for a head, but the idea is sound; you can scoot around, tilt and pan its camera, and talk face to face with people in the remote environment."

Are we looking at some future office scenario, when this robotic telepresence is the virtual alter-ego of the CEO, doing his routinary peep-ins in office cubicles to say hello and see if everybody's buckling down to their jobs? Should this be the stuff of our corporate future : adding to spy cameras at every office nook and corner , breathing down your necks to see if you finally got your spreadsheets right? Hmmmm.....


Just recently , TiLR was given an opportunity to "work" at the X Prize Foundation for the Google Lunar X Prize liaison office. In this capacity TiLR will enable remote workers to participate at staff meeting by using TiLR as their office avatar.

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