We Make Money Not Art reports on a new invention out of Japan:

Tanaka Seisakusyo’s new Automatic Door is the most puzzling thing I’ve seen this week.

The door is segmented into multiple strips and opens minimally according to the shape of the individual, animal or object that has to pass through. It also incorporates a security function that identifies people. The door is activated by the infrared sensors (the small black areas attached at the inner edges of the strips).

There is video of this door in action here.

What is the purpose of such a door?

The main aim of this invention is to better protect a room from dust, pollen, bugs, germs etc. It could also be used for room-size freezers. In addition, it helps save the energy needed for air-conditioning.

We Make Money Not Art: Automatic door… Japan style

Hmmm. How much ‘better’ does this door protect a room? I mean dust, pollen, bugs and germs are pretty small, and will still fit through the smaller opening, no? As with Repliee Q1Expo, the almost-human-looking android, this seems like another case where the invention’s purpose is almost an afterthought to development and execution of the really neat idea.

So is this what happens when R & D funding isn’t driven by the military?

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