South Korea one Step Away from ED-209 with Robo Prison Guard
The ‘Robo-Guards’ are roaming the corridors as part of their live-testing with the hope that automation will make prisons safer as well as making them cheaper to run.
The five-foot tall, Korean-designed robots keep watch thanks to a number of cameras, including 3D, a microphone and speaker. They scoot around on large rubber wheels and are all equipped with software designed to evaluate inmate behavior.
If the robot determines the behavior of an inmate is out of the ordinary, it will alert a human guard. If requires, the prison bots can be switched to manual and be directed by controls on an iPad.
According to Phys.Org, the robots also function as “wireless two-way communications devices”. This means that inmates and guards can communicate with each other immediately and directly using the Robo Guard as a video phone.
This should allow the human guards to respond to emergency situations more efficiently – as well as more safely.
The one-month trial will cost more than $750,000 but, should it prove viable, the Asian Forum of Corrections hopes to employ them permanently.
It also hopes to fine tune them so they can carry out random weapon and contraband searches.
I dare to suggest that the next step will be to arm them….