Japanese Robot Peels Bananas Without Squishing In Viral Video; Baffles Netizens
Image Credit: Image: YouTube @UT ISI Lab

Food and technology are rapidly making advancements together. And many recent innovations are proof of that - be it robots making pizza or more. Recently, a burger-vending machine was installed in New Jersey and the innovations seem to have just begun. In another instance, a Japanese professor came up with a device that will let you taste the food on your screen. Yes, you read that right. The ‘lickable’ television indeed grabbed eyeballs across the internet. And now, another robot has been invented to solve an interesting problem. No, it isn’t to serve or deliver food, because that too has already been done. Researchers, however, have unveiled a robot that can perform the delicate task of peeling a banana, that too without squishing the fruit. Yes, that is true. 

Japan has always been on the forefront of technology and thus robots in Japan have already been performing simple tasks such as food delivery and doing the dishes. Remember we told you how at the Winter Olympics held in Tokyo 2022, athletes were getting food delivered to their doorstep with the help of a bot? Read about it here. However, this robot can perform the simple job of peeling a banana correctly 57% of the time. This may sound like too small an achievement but it is indeed a milestone considering the training and processes that the two-armed robot had to undergo. 

A video shared by the researchers from the University of Tokyo showed the robot picking up and peeling a banana without squishing the fruit inside in a matter of three minutes. Don’t believe us? Take a look at the full video here: 

The clip was shared on YouTube by the Laboratory for Intelligent Systems and Informatics (ISI Lab) at the University of Tokyo. According to a report in Reuters, the robot learnt the task after more than 13 hours of rigorous training. Researchers used a "deep imitation learning" process where they demonstrated the banana-peeling action hundreds of times, for the robot to learn and successfully imitate it. 

Twitter users reacted to the news with a mixed lot of reactions. While some were amazed with the accuracy of the robot, some questioned why a robot was being made to learn such a simple task in the first place, and how it would be helpful in the future. Others wanted to know why robots couldn't peel bananas but perform complex surgeries. A few also felt that such a technology can be used for better purposes. 

Take a look at the questions that Twitter users asked:&nbs

Japanese researcher Yasuo Kuniyoshi believes that his invention simply proves how robots can be trained to perform other functions as well in the future. While these are very subtle and trained tasks that are currently performed only by humans, training robots for such tasks can help tackle Japan's labour shortage problems too, as per Kuniyoshi. 

What did you think about the robot peeling bananas? Let us know.