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A robot that cheats

Think you’re good at rock-paper-scissors? You won’t beat this robot. That’s because it’s cheating:

It’s still quite impressive though. Equipped with a high-speed video camera, it takes just one millisecond to recognise its opponent’s hand gesture without the need for special gloves or other such aids.

This video was produced by the Ishikawa Oku Laboratory at Tokyo University. YouTube has plenty of other videos of robots playing rock-paper-scissors, or janken (じゃんけん), as the game is known in Japan.

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Header image: Banzuiin Chobei (幡随院長兵衛; 1622–1657) — the Japanese Robin Hood, who became a popular figure in Japanese literature. This image is from a ukiyoe portrait by Utagawa Kuniyoshi (歌川国芳; 1798–1861). From Wikimedia Commons.

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