Skip to comments.In Japan, Aibo robots get their own funeral
Posted on 05/01/2018 7:41:22 AM PDT by TigerLikesRooster
In Japan, Aibo robots get their own funeral
by Miwa Suzuki
ISUMI, CHIBA PREF. The robot dogs lined up in their dozens last Thursday in Chiba Prefecture were no tech fair display. They were the dearly departed being honored with their own traditional funeral.
In some respects, it was a funeral like any other in Japan, with incense smoke wafting as a priest chanted a sutra, praying for the peaceful transition of the souls of the departed.
But the departed were 114 of Sonys old generations of Aibo robot dogs, each wearing a tag to show where they came from and to which family they belonged.
Electronics repair company A-Fun Co., which specializes in fixing vintage products, has sent off around 800 Aibos this way in recent years at a centuries-old Buddhist temple.
With the Aibo no longer in production, owners of old or dead robodogs often send them to the company, the only way it can obtain genuine parts to use in repairs.
The defunct dogs serve as the equivalent of organ donors for defective robots, but before they are put to use, the company honors them with a traditional send-off.
The dogs often arrive with letters that give their names, how they spent their lives and other details.
I feel relieved to know there will be a prayer for my Aibo, one owner said in a letter.
Another wrote: Please help other Aibos. Tears rose in my eyes when I decided to say goodbye.
Bungen Oi, the priest at 450-year-old Kofukuji Temple in Isumi, dismisses the idea that holding memorials for machines is absurd.
All things have a bit of soul, he said after the service.
(Excerpt) Read more at japantimes.co.jp ...
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