Until a vaccine is achieved to combat the threat of coronavirus, the most effective way to stay safe during lock down is to follow social distancing guidelines.
Although everyone is allowed to go outside and stretch their legs, social distancing can sometimes be hard especially in places like parks, which have been congested during the warm weather.
While the police and authorities can only do so much to encourage people to keep a two-metre difference from others sometimes a little extra help is needed.
That’s why in Singapore the municipal authorities have deployed Boston Dynamics’ Spot robot (the one that looks like a dog) in the city’s Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park, as well as the Pandan and MacRitchie reservoirs, to remind people to social distance.
As reported by The Verge this is part of a two-week trial where the robot will play prerecorded messages about social distancing. The robot is also fitted with cameras which will monitor how many people are in the parks.
That being said the Singapore National Parks Board has confirmed that they will not be collecting anyone’s personal data or use the footage to identify any individuals.
The Singapore based Straits Times has said that the board is considering sending the remote-controlled robots to other parts of the city, with signs being posted around the park warning people to not ‘disrupt’ the machines.
However, the robots haven’t quite captured everyone’s imagination with some comparing the footage to something from a dystopian novel.
One of the creepiest and most dystopian things I've seen since the pandemic began: a terrifying camera-equipped remote-controlled robot patrols Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park in Singapore to — for now — warn about social distancing. Look at the fear. Story: https://t.co/12QfT1mcyZ pic.twitter.com/hBGUhmC7N7
— Glenn Greenwald (@ggreenwald) May 8, 2020
Just received the most Singaporean pandemic content from a mate based in the little red dot pic.twitter.com/vqgnQ5F4D9
— Soon-Tzu Speechley 孫子 (@speechleyish) May 8, 2020
Sooo creepy https://t.co/jer9UgI7EK
— Funky (@Benaskren) May 8, 2020
This is bloody creepy. https://t.co/jN8xTXVLgU
— James Melville (@JamesMelville) May 9, 2020
At the time of writing Singapore has confirmed just 20 deaths from coronavirus from more than 22,000 reported cases since the outbreak was first detected in the country on 23 January.