Friday, January 4, 2019

A Court Robot Mashup Idea

Some of you might remember the 1970’s and 80’s USA television commercial for Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup candy where the tagline was “You got your chocolate in my peanut butter!” 

I think I have a similar “mashup” idea for using robots in the courts.  I explain below.

The eCourts 2018 Conference introduced CORA (Court-Operated Robotic Assistant), a robot that provides a friendly and unique approach for providing information to courthouse visitors via the front mounted touchscreen.  The Ottawa County Courts in Michigan have tested it.  But, while a moving touch screen may be able to engage a person with questions, I believe that along with a similar idea from Japan presents another possibility of extending this concept.

A recent article on the website (with a link to a longer story on described a test Tokyo cafĂ© where the robots were controlled by severely disabled persons.  The normal CORA touchscreen interface could handle the easier questions, but wouldn’t it be great to provide mobility via the robot (and jobs) to disabled persons to be able to interact with courthouse visitors?

This approach extends the capabilities of the robot.  For example, a person can more easily understand unusual questions and respond appropriately.  They may also be able to steer the robot to guide persons to the proper office (if the questions or case matters are sensitive) or to the elevator.

And our human/robot assistant may also be able to better connect with children as well?

This approach has not been tried in a court yet.  But what do you think?  Please share your ideas/concerns in the comment section below or online in the LinkedIn post.

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