Japan Robot Mishap

HITACHINAKA, Japan (AP) _ It's designed to run office errands,
but a toddler-like robot ran straight into office furniture during
a demonstration in Japan today.

The Hitachi-built machine was being shown off for reporters when
it smashed into a desk. A demonstrator grabbed it before it toppled
over.

Researchers blame the mishap on a lunch-break jam of wireless
network traffic at the company's research center. Heavy wireless
activity prevented the robot from communicating with its handler's
laptop.

An hour after the office crash, the robot smoothly cleared the
office obstacles. Developers acknowledge the robot has kinks to
work out. It's the latest attempt by a Japanese company to develop
a robot that can be an assistant in daily life.


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