Rock-Paper-Scissors, the longstanding arbitrator of riding shotgun or eating the last slice of pizza has been celebrated for hundreds of years for its simple yet elegant balance of psychology and chance.

It’s such a part of the human experience that a robot could never out match the human mind in the RPS arena.  Until now that is, as Engineers from the University of Tokyo decided to stick their noses in and build a robot that never ever loses at Rock-Paper-Scissors – ever! So how does it do it?

It cheats, that’s how. This robot uses a camera capable of catching what shape you’re going to throw and then throws the counter-shape all within one millisecond. In other words, it sees what you’re doing and beats you so fast that you can’t notice it.

Tokyo University’s Ishikawa Oku Laboratory claims that this is part of research to develop ways for robots to assist humans in real time by following their movements.

However, we all know what this really means.  Soon the robots will always get the front seat for long car rides so that our legs will become weak and atrophied from sitting in the cramped back seat. Then the robots will always get the last piece of food, denying us of much needed nutrition.  After that, it’s just a hop skip and a jump until were all biological batteries inside giant pink goo pods like in that documentary I saw, The Matrix.

In conclusion, I encourage all humans to adopt the Rock-Paper-Scissors-Lizard-Spock game for disputes so that we can stay one step ahead of the robot menace.

Source: Ishikawa Watanabe Lab (English) via Kotaro 269 (Japanese)