Kirobo, the conversational robot-astronaut, ready for launch ... but does it tweet?

TOKYO – The world’s first space conversation experiment between a robot and humans is ready to be launched.

Developers from the Kirobo project, named after “kibo” or hope in Japanese and “robot,” gathered in Tokyo Wednesday to demonstrate the 34 centimetre (13 inch) tall robot’s ability to talk.

They hope robots like Kirobo that can hold conversations will eventually be used to assist astronauts working in space.

When a developer asked Kirobo what its dream was, the robot said it wanted to create a future where humans and robots live together and get along.

Kirobo is scheduled to be launched from the Tanegashima Space Center on Aug. 4.

The project was jointly run by organizations including Dentsu Inc., the University of Tokyo, and Toyota.

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