As parts of the world attempt to lighten lockdown restrictions, many nations are looking to employ advance technology to help limit the spread of the deadly coronavirus. Among them, Singapore has enlisted the help of Boston Dynamics and its robot dog Spot to aid in enforcing social-distancing measures in its parks.
As reported by Reuters, the city-state deployed Spot in a centralized park on Friday, as part of a two-week trial period. If Spot discovers any park-goers not adhering to the rules, it’ll softly and politely says in a woman’s voice, “Let’s keep Singapore healthy. For your own safety and for those around you, please stand at least one meter apart. Thank you.” What’s more is that the remote-controlled Spot is able to estimate the number of people in the park it patrols, however, park officials have stated that its cameras will not be able to track individuals or record personal data.
Singapore has seen a steady rise in COVID-19 cases, becoming one of the hardest hit regions in Southeast Asia. To reverse this trend, the Singaporean government has asked residents to only leave their homes for essential trips, like grocery shopping, and to wear a mask at all times in public. Outdoor exercise is permissible, however it must be done alone.
Spot is Singapore’s second robot to police social-distancing in public areas: a robot in the shape of a small car is being used at a nearby reservoir to warn visitors “not to loiter” and that “gatherings are not allowed.”