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Superfast Rock-Paper-Scissors Robot 'wins' Every Time

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robot playing rock-paper-scissors

The Janken robot takes one millisecond to recognize what shape a human hand is making then quickly chooses a winning move.

Credit: Sprocket Ink

Japanese scientists have developed a robot that can choose a hand shape for the rock-paper-scissors game almost at the same time as a human. The Janken robot is a faster version of a robot unveiled last year by University of Tokyo researchers, which completed hand shapes 20 milliseconds after a human hand. The new version takes one millisecond to recognize the shape a human hand is making, and then choose a winning move and react at high speed. The scientists in the university's Ishikawa Oku Laboratory specialize in sensor fusion, research that seeks to replicate and improve upon the human senses using high-speed intelligent robots.

The scientists used high-speed recognition and reaction for Janken, rather than prediction. Technically, the robot cheats, considering it reacts to what a human hand is doing rather than making a premeditated simultaneous action.


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