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The effect of robotics on Japanese culture

The existence of mankind had bought a lot of changes in the existing environment, as each tribe or civilization was different at its own level. Each culture had its own sets of beliefs which ultimately represented them and separated them form each other. The Japanese culture has been one such society that has evolved with time the greatest than any other culture. The Japanese culture in the ancient times had a strong belief in the proper way of life and was highly in to the well being one self and truly believed in the code of honor and decree.

“Samurai”, was a way of life rather than a clan of Japan and till date their expertise in swordsmanship and their valor is still remembered and feared. Japan had a lot of influences in its culture, and the main facet of Japanese culture was its flexibility in adapting new influences, which they contemplated were for the better. The western influences made massive difference in the culture, which ultimately made Japan look like a western country, as people had tended to lose on their kimonos and had started wearing western attires.

As time passed by, and Japan came on the losing end of the second world war, the people of Japan consciously decided to engross themselves into only development and technology, as not only the war had devastated the nation, but the atomic bombings had left deep scars on the minds of the people. The inhabitants of the nation wanted to diverse their minds into the development of the nation and in their attempt to do it, they engrossed themselves so much into technology that they have

emerged as a nation which is immensely popular for its high tech gadgets, but more importantly it is famous for the robotic influence in their culture. The development of robots has been one of the most fascinating things of Japan and with their adaptability of bringing change in the culture; robotics have become a very strong setup in the fast moving and tech savvy culture of Japan.

Japanese culture which always had a keen interest in the concept of artificial intelligence, made massive developments in the field of robotics, as the whole concept caught the imagination of the entire population. This brought in massive changes in the culture, which primarily consists of people who consider themselves to be middle class, with a very low number of people are doing jobs that are considered to be menial. Since in Japan, the culture revolves around high education and technology, the need for someone to do odd jobs had always caught the imagination of the nation.

The entire Japanese culture which had started revolving around high quality and technology oriented products, got into the mayhem of producing robots to co exist with them for their entertainment and as well as for doing jobs at home and office. The concept of having pets which were not real was a big success in Japan, as people loved their online pets. When the concept of robotic dogs was introduced, it became an instant hit overnight, as this robotic dog intercepted the Japanese culture very well.

The fact that everyone in Japan is always short of time and has to use high end technology to do a lot of jobs, made the robotic dog a boon, as their owner actually didn’t have to care about their feeding time and also they didn’t had to fret about their lack of time to pay attention to a pet. The robotic culture has dwelled very well with Japan as it has made life a lot easier and better for the people of Japan. Today with help of high end technology, parents can leave their children under a robot and can still monitor the kids with the help of internet though the processing unit of the robot.

They can command the robot and make changes in order according to their needs sitting at their offices. This kind of life, which even is far away from a dream for most nations, is very much a reality of Japan. One of the main reasons as why Japan easily accepted the robotic culture is because today the developed nations who are working for making high end robots are doing it to for their military purposes. Japan on the other hand has an intention to help its society with technology, and this exact thought has made robotics indispensable in Japanese society.

Robotics have made massive changes in the Japanese culture, as Japan today has a receding population, with its major problem being that it population will soon have a huge place for people who will be old and ageing. Robots are doing well in filling up these spaces and are helping the common Japanese person to take care of their elderly and kids and also apart from helping, it is bridging the time and money spend by the people to get the menial jobs done.

Japan’s current fertility rate is 1:3 babies per woman, which is far below the average needed and it has been estimated that 40 percent of the population will be over 65 by 2055. Today itself robots have become integral part of the society and it is expected that the robots will be more advanced then and would look after the ageing population. Today itself, when robots are doing menials jobs or are doing jobs as caretakers, it is giving the Japanese people the freedom to continue their work without any thought of worry.

Japanese culture acceptance towards robots can be assessed by the following: “Technological advancement has been enjoyed by Japanese society through modern conveniences not national pride. The result has been highly innovative and advanced technology in every facet of industry and daily life and now with the increasing rise of intelligent machines and robotics, buzzwords, and over-enthusiastic marketing departments, the principle problem when discussing robotics has become one of definition”.

(Courtesy: James Matthews, “Anime and the Acceptance of Robotics in Japan: A Symbiotic Relationship”, 2nd June 2004. Retrieved on April 9, 2008 from site http://www. generation5. org/content/2004/anime-robotics. asp) Today the influence of robotics is very huge in the Japanese culture, as robots are not only there to monitor and care take people, but robots are being used to fill gaps in the form micro sized capsules that detect lesions to high tech vacuum cleaners.

Even children are using some forms of artificial intelligence, in one way or another. The ample scope given to Japanese children to divert their attentions in researching and developing things are using robots for their help and some children are also creating robots at tender ages of 11 and 12. Today thanks to the robotic mixing in the Japanese culture, the people of Japan don’t have to worry about the future shrinkage of population as much, the now government is planning to fill 3. 5 millions jobs by 2025 by robots.

It has also been estimated that Japan could save more than 21 billion dollars on insurance payments by 2025, as the no of robots would be care giving elderly would have had a phenomenal rise. The influence is so high that the current population and the government of Japan are thinking the future with robots, and now even can’t think how they existed without having them in their lives before. Since the country is way ahead of technology and lifestyle than most countries can dream of, robotics and artificial intelligence have become a part of day to day life.

Connecting the robots to their 3rd generation mobiles is one of the most normal things in Japan. The country is going in for a lifestyle which technological idealist have dreamed about, and their culture in fact is getting more and more tech savvy due to presence of robots in their lives. If status in other countries is seen by the model of car and the size of house one has, then in Japan, it is seen today by the model no of the robot one has and how technological it is advanced than the other.

The Japanese culture today lives on a very fascinating life, which is only endorsed by robots and high tech gadgets. The robotic influence on the culture is only going to increase for the good on Japan, and it would carve the nation much different to any other nation existing in this current world.


1) James Matthews, “Anime and the Acceptance of Robotics in Japan: A Symbiotic Relationship”, 2nd June 2004. http://www. generation5. org/content/2004/anime-robotics. asp

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