Robotics and artificial intelligence technology in Japanese libraries

HARADA, Takashi (2019) Robotics and artificial intelligence technology in Japanese libraries. Paper presented at: IFLA WLIC 2019 - Athens, Greece - Libraries: dialogue for change in Session S08 - Information Technology. In: Robots in libraries: challenge or opportunity?, 21-22 August 2019, Wildau, Germany.

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Language: English (Original)
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Robotics and artificial intelligence technology in Japanese libraries

Robotics and artificial intelligence technology are rapidly spreading in libraries. Conventionally, libraries have used an auto book circulation system or automated storage and retrieval system (ASRS) both with automatic control technology. In recent years, robots have been used in various other places in Japanese libraries. A guiding humanoid robot is a typical example. The humanoid robot Pepper developed by Softbank is already active in dozens of libraries, and there are plans to introduce 500 or more. As a guiding robot, animal type robots such as a rabbit are also used. In addition, there are many robots that work behind the scenes in libraries. For example, an auto-tracking booktrack makes it possible for a librarian to perform return processing without having to operate a heavy booktrack. The robot suit HAL (Hybrid Assistive Limb), which was developed at the University of Tsukuba, assists lifting work and reduces the burden on the waist. The Tsukuba Central Library uses HAL to lift heavy bookcases onto a bookmobile. Furthermore, artificial intelligence technology is being used for reading assistance and programming classes in libraries. The game "KOKORO" Saver, which we developed, has a mechanism to recommend children's books according to their interests. Kindai University library analyzes the content posted on social networking sites (SNSs) and introduces books that match the potential interests of the student. Although the use of robots in the library is still developing, it is expected that robots will be used more and more in the library.

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