Thursday, May 12, 2005

Robot camel jockeys: Part II - Gulf News

The remote-controlled machine passed a successful trial in a 2.5 km race at Shahaniya racetrack [Doha, Qatar] two weeks ago.

"The machine is still under development and must be completed before we can deploy it in the races," said Shaikh Abdullah Bin Saud Al Thani, head of the robot jockey committee (RJC).

The robot developer, the Swiss Alexandre Colot, is to conduct a series of trials until the machine is ready.

A robot jockey weighs between 15 and 20 kilos. The difficult part of the trial is to adjust it to the camel's movements and size.

Qatar Industrial Development Bank (QIDB) has fully financed the development of the 3 million riyal project, under the directives of Prime Minister Shaikh Abdullah Bin Khalifa Al Thani.

In addition, Qatar has bought exclusive rights to use the technology and the invention has already been patented under the name of the country, Shaikh Abdullah Bin Saud said.

Robot Jockey Committee, first test
Gulf News
Shaikh Abdullah said the RJC has not yet taken a decision over the sale of the machines and how much they would eventually cost.

He said RJC will offer training sessions on how to use the robot for all those concerned starting September.
A similar test was conducted in Dubai one month ago. See my post and my not so tongue-in-cheek followup on job market implications.



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