Japan’s ‘Human Uber’ is the Answer To Your Social Problems


new japanese tech for people who want to avoid other humans

People keen on avoiding the horrors of human interaction can now take advantage of ChameleonMask, a new service that “brings” them wherever they need to be.

The new tech, developed by Japanese researchers Jun Rekimoto and Kana Misawa, uses a human surrogate for another remote user through “a mask-shaped display that shows a remote user’s live face” and “a voice channel transmits a remote user’s voice.”

new japanese tech chameleonmask
Photo via @willknight/Twitter

The researchers wrote:

“This design is based on our hypothesis assuming physical and social telepresence can be embodied by such a surrogate human who imitates the remote user. It also eliminates many difficulties of teleoperated robots wandering in the environment. Our pilot study confirmed that people could regard the masked person as a right person.”

chameleon mask lets you hire a 'human uber'
Photo via @haleylaurenross/Twitter

As you can tell from the description, the service is pretty simple. If you’ve ever promised to visit a sick friend but couldn’t make it for some reason, then try to hire this “human Uber” in lieu of your presence!

If anything, we’re not sure how surrogates can function at the dinner table or legal settings — with their faces completely blocked and legal representation uncharted — but there must be ways in future updates.

chameleonmask ipad face
Photo via @willknight/Twitter

What do you think of Japan’s “human Uber”?

Featured Image: Screenshot via Association for Computing Machinery (ACM)/YouTube