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Tokyo Offers $1 Billion Research Grant for Human Augmentation, Cyborg Tech


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OriHime-D service robot

The Japanese government's new research initiative will seek to develop technologies to address the country's looming labor shortage.

Credit: Reuters

The Japanese government is offering researchers up to $1 billion to develop ambitious human augmentation and cyborg technologies. 

The government will soon invite researchers and academics to submit proposals in 25 areas, ranging from technologies which can support aging bodies to environmental solutions that tackle industrial waste, according to a Nikkei Asian Review report. One-hundred billion yen ($921 million) has been set aside to fund these projects for the first five years of a decade-long support agreement, a government source said.

Some of the projects are heavily grounded in problems that Japan faces. One looming issue is that fewer citizens are having children and growth has reduced to -0.27 percent. Technology which can help individuals work longer or replace human staff altogether may buffer the declining birth rate.

The government is also interested in automation technologies suitable for agricultural, forestry, construction, and fishery applications, as well as any proposals which will further Japan's goal of recycling industrial waste.

From ZDNet
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