This futuristic machine is called Laundroid and it’s here to fold your laundry (and, honestly, given its appearance, maybe learn our customs for the benefit of outer-rim galaxies of weaponized Laundroids). As a whole, I’m pretty torn, because while this is a stunning next step in household tech, I’m hesitant because…well, robots.
In general, Laundroid looks like a somehow sterner version of 2001: A Space Odyessey’s HAL 9000 (and maybe even the monolith too). It’s also reminicent of an ominous door if Poltergeist took place on a space station. I personally don’t trust its appearance at all, but I want you to know that I’m not inherently anti-robot. I trust robots if they look like Johnny Five from Short Circuit and I even had a crush on Small Wonder’s Vicki when I was a kid (and I’ll likely have a thing for Lisa from Weird Science indefinitely).
But I believe sleek-looking robots are terrifying outputs of mankind’s curiosity and decisions to play God at a time when The Singularity increasingly evolves as a real threat to our society, and one day we’ll have to call these maddeningly emotionless self-aware machines “Overlord,” “Boss,” maybe even “Dad"—who knows?
However, I do love having my laundry folded, so…I’m in.
Born out of a partnership between Seven Dreamers Laboratories, Panasonic, and Daiwa House, Laundroid has a lot to offer, mostly as a conceptual life aid. Its creators estimate 9,000 hours of a human life are spent folding laundry. That makes 375 days when totaled, and that’s so much time you could spend doing way cooler stuff.
Laundroid’s recent Tokyo debut and demo showed a single t-shirt taking five minutes to be folded, which, sure, is slower than you, but the important thing here is that it’s not you. No, no, with Laundroid, you could be out dancing like nobody’s watching, shooting for the moon and landing among the stars, or keeping calm and buying new clothes you’ll never have to fold!
Here’s the Laundroid demonstration at the 2015 CEATEC consumer electronics show in Tokyo/first moment Laundroid became quietly self-aware and started plotting against humanity.