South Korean Prisons Might Have Mech Guardians Soon

Attention Humanoids: Do Not Drop the Soap. photo by Yonhap News Agency

South Korea is one of the leading nations in the development of robotic technology, so it makes sense that robotic prison guards are about to become a very real possibility in that country. A project to create robotic prison guards, headed up by Professor Lee Baik-chul of Kyonggi University, has reportedly produced a very real alternative to organic corrections officers. The robot cost 1 billion South Korean won to develop, and they should be ready for a trial run next spring.

A jail in Pohang should play host to the trials in a test that is sponsored by the Ministry of Justice. The machines are apparently superior to conventional surveillance technology since they carry programming that analyzes the behavior of prisoners and identifies anything that seems to be up. They can even open a communications channel if a prisoner wishes to communicate to live guards in an emergency.

They were designed to look humane in some respects, and they can apparently help prisoners who are in danger or who have become extremely ill. This certainly seems like a humane task to give such inhuman creations. Then again, the compassionate appearance these robots have might be concerning to some individuals. Some people might feel that the robots look rather gentle.

Nevertheless, the robots were not designed to crack down on violent prisoners according to Lee Baik-chul’s comments. He has also assured those who were concerned that they were in some way dangerous that the robots were designed to be helpers. On the other hand, the whole idea does seem like it might be fulfilling promises set by authors of science fiction.

[Yonhap News]

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Category: Science

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  1. Ben Reed says:

    Would be good due to the fact assaults on prison officers are on the rise but you would have to weigh up the expenses of the prisoners attempting to damage the machines and potentially costing the tax payers more money that what its worth.

  2. Daniel Jackson says:

    If they manage to make a robot prison guard, that would be awesome! It would be like a door way to the future that most of us in the past imagined, hell we may finally have shoes that tie itself.

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