Special Issue on Kukanchi Interactive Human – Space Design and Intelligence Dedicated to Dr. Kazuo Tanie
Makoto Mizukawa, Kazuhito Yokoi, Tsutomu Hasegawa, Shigeki Sugano and Yasushi Nakauchi
Dean, College of Engineering,
Professor, Dept. of Electrical Engineering,
College of Engineering, Shibaura Institute of Technology, Deputy Director, Intelligent Systems
Research Institute, National Institute of
Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST), Professor, Intelligent Robots and Vision Systems Laboratory, Dept. of Advanced Information Technology, Graduate School of Information Science and Electrical Engineering, Kyushu University, Professor, Intelligent Machine Laboratory,
Dept. of Modern Mechanical Engineering,
School of Creative Science and Engineering, Waseda University, Associate Professor, Human Robot Interaction Laboratory, Graduate School of Systems and Information Engineering, University of Tsukuba
The history of science and technology evolution plays a great role in expanding human ability. Physical enhancement is done by controlling power after invention of steam engines and governor. These lead inventions of various useful machines to improve the productivity of material, food, and many attractive consumer products such as automobiles. Electrics and electronics also provided social infrastructure for industries and individual life.
From ancient times, media have been developed to assist in intellectual activities such as characters, clay boards, papers, printing machines to carry knowledge. The accumulation of knowledge was one source of governance power and social movement of the Enlightenment promoted spreading such knowledge to citizens by editing Encyclopedias. This movement opened modern and civilized era. Telecommunication and computer technologies have accelerated to develop tools that help thinking and communication using the enormous knowledge stored in storages distributed worldwide. Kukanchi —Interactive Human-Space Design and Intelligence— enhances human physical boundary limited by its body to its surrounding space adopting and fusing technologies such as robotics, structured information, sensor network, object oriented software, software engineering of Robot Technology (RT) middleware, human–robot–interaction, etc. Kukanchi is expected to provide barrier–free environment and support to maintain QoL of daily life for any kind of handicapped people.
This special issue features nine excellent papers from researchers devoting efforts to establishing kukanchi field and concept. This special issue is edited by guest editors, Prof. Makoto Mizukawa (Shibaura Institute of Technology) and four editors, Drs. Kazuhito Yokoi (AIST), Tsutomu Hasegawa (Kyushu University), Shigeki Sugano (Waseda University), Yasushi Nakauchi (University of Tsukuba). We thank the authors for their contributions and reviewers for their time and effort in making this special issue possible. We also thank the JRM Editorial Board for providing the opportunity to take part in this work.
In closing, we would like to express our deep gratitude to the late Dr. Kazuo Tanie, who founded the Kukanchi research group.
Copyright© 2009 by Fuji Technology Press Ltd. and Japan Society of Mechanical Engineers. All right reserved.