Welcomed Onboard Costa Diadema, flagship of the Costa Cruises fleet, Pepper and crewmember Take A Selfie.
Pepper robot, the world’s first emotional robot, keeps extending its employment range. Designed at first as a sympathetic companion for the lonely, Pepper is now working in lines that require a robot with the ability to listen to and put up with multiple humans. After discovering that Pepper the robot is now working for the French railway system, it comes as no surprise to find the robot preparing to become a mariner... No, not a space probe; the ancient type of mariner: like the guy in the poem with the albatross around his neck (in the image above Pepper has a tie around his virtual neck); a sailor on board a ship.
As noted in an earlier post, Pepper helps passengers on French railways with information regarding arrival and departure times and assists tourists with questions about interesting local sights. Unlike most human railway workers, Pepper has perfect information recall, the ability to speak and understand many languages, and perhaps most important of all, unlimited patience with the hundreds of stupid questions that so irritate human railway workers.
Perhaps after seeing what Pepper can do to improve passenger service on the railways, the Costa Group, one of Europe’s leading cruise companies, decided to give the robot a try aboard its cruise ships. The trial aboard two of its twenty-five ships, the Costa Diadema and sister ship AIDAprima, will cost the cruise lines a million Euros--that should buy more than a few of the robots! While as yet the Costa Group has not specified the services that Pepper will provide its passenger, we can imagine that just as with the French railways, language skills and tourist information will be among that number. And patience! Always patience!