Kawasaki Motorcycles is going to be your ’Jarvis’
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The Japanese Green are working on Artificial Intelligence

If you’ve been a fan of the Iron Man series, you must have definitely been jealous about Robert Downey Jr owning Stark Industries and his very own talking computer which is Just A Rather Very Intelligent System.

Similar to its British voice, Kawasaki has been busy with playing with its own version of artificial intelligence on the other side of the world. The Japanese giant will be developing this technology to introduce it on its motorcycle products and it will ‘have a personality and can grow along with the rider’.

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Making use of ICT (Information and Communications Technology) and Artificial intelligence, the system will be able to recognise the rider’s voice and emotions and if given an instruction, it will react accordingly based on the ‘Emotion Generation Engine’ and ‘Natural Language Dialogue System’. This will enable both rider and machine to communicate and open a whole new dimension to the phenomena called ‘motorcycling’.

This AI will access the wide available information on the internet and the company’s bank of analytical chassis with running data stored on a cloud-based data centre to provide the rider with relevant suggestions and cautions for an enhanced riding experience and without doubt a much safer one. The rider can also change the system’s level of interaction based on his experience, skill and riding style.

The motorcycle will provide the rider with literally every information he will need to traverse his journey without a hitch and make it even better. The system can manage bike systems and update the firmware via air for hassle-free maintenance of the machine. It will update you with traffic situation and weather conditions on your route to make the ride as seamless as possible. The system will also keep giving you suggestions on how to improve your motorcycle’s capabilities and your riding techniques to get the full potential of both.

This constant interaction between the rider and the machine will allow both to develop a unique personality, which was never experienced before in the history of motorcycling. One will start looking at a motorcycle as a coach with which he can communicate and make his riding experience take up a few thousand notches higher.

All this development is a part of Kawasaki’s rider-centric development philosophy, ‘RIDEOLOGY’, which believes that their products are meant to be more than just taking you from one place to another, but transport you to a world of fun and rewarding traits.

Taking full advantage of the vast experience and combined technological resources of the KHI Group, this system is co-developed by the Cocoro SB, another Japanese corporation that has already created ‘Pepper’, who makes use of the AI technology ‘Emotion Engine’ to read people’s emotions and reacts accordingly.

It will be interesting to see how Kawasaki will take this concept forward and merge it with everyday riding. There are two other Japanese honchos investing in AI systems and developing their own version of the concept. Honda, as we all know has the ASIMO and Yamaha is on with developing the ‘Motobot’, an autonomous motorcycle-riding humanoid robot.

These are exciting times for the industry, but it is a big gamble taken up when it comes to judging what one perceives as ‘riding experience’. This could as well take away the concept of ‘self-learning’ to become an advanced and experienced rider, which will not happen if the rider is always coddled with the AI toy from the beginning of his riding. No doubt it is going to probably save a lot of lives, but getting a bigger picture here is hazy. Something like what the auto-shift did to driving cars.

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PRESS RELEASE

Kawasaki to start developing motorcycles with AI technologies

Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Ltd. (KHI) is moving forward with plans to develop next-generation motorcycles that have a personality and can grow along with the rider. The motorcycles will make use of ICT (Information and Communications Technology), including AI (Artificial Intelligence), to achieve this goal.

The motorcycles being developed use the Emotion Generation Engine and Natural Language Dialogue System*1. From the words spoken by the rider, this AI-controlled system can pick up on the rider’s intent and emotional state. Enabling rider and motorcycle to communicate and share an understanding of purpose will open the door to a new world of unprecedented riding experiences.

Accessing Kawasaki’s bank of analytical chassis and running data stored on a cloud-based data centre or referencing the vast amount of information available on the Internet, the system will be able to offer the rider pertinent hints for enhanced riding enjoyment, or relay safety-related or reassuring advice as the situation dictates. Through advanced electronic management technology, having the system update machine settings based on the rider’s experience, skill and riding style will also be possible.

Through repeated interaction, this kind of communication between rider and motorcycle will allow the motorcycle to develop a unique personality reflecting the individual idiosyncrasies of the rider. With mutual trust established, both rider and motorcycle will be able to improve and grow, offering an all-new kind of enjoyment.

Kawasaki motorcycles are products of RIDEOLOGY*2, its original rider-centric development philosophy. Kawasaki believes that motorcycles are more than simple tools for getting from one place to another; they should be fun and rewarding for the rider to control. To take this idea to the next level, Kawasaki has begun working on the new motorcycles that, through the use of AI, will possess individual personalities.

In order to deliver exciting motorcycles that are fun and rewarding to control, Kawasaki will continue to take full advantage of the vast experience and combined technological resources of the KHI Group as it explores novel approaches in the development of new products and technologies.

*1 A form or artificial intelligence that enables man and machine to communicate by imbuing the machine with lifelike feelings and technology capable of recognising emotion by the sound of the speaker’s voice. Platform currently being developed by cocoro SB Corp., a member of the SoftBank Group.
*2 Kawasaki’s rider-centric development philosophy, RIDEOLOGY, is a commitment to pursue all possibilities to ensure that its products possess both Power and Gentleness, and are fun and rewarding to control.

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