Note: Since this was posted last year, we were selected as one of the MANOI AT01 monitor (beta) testers. Please feel free to check out all of our MANOI information, reports, and videos.
The Japanese have a long tradition of choosing or constructing really unique, and often odd product names. The new MANOI robot is no exception. MANOI's name was well thought out, even if it does seem strange to Westerners.
The MANOI project team had several goals that had to be met to settle on a good name. Of course, the name had to be unique and without any potential registered trademark conflicts.
They were looking for a name that expressed the feeling of a 'pure machine living being'. MANOI, like most bipedal robot designs, is humanoid in nature, but they felt that the 'hu' prefix had too strong a connection to 'human.' And, the 'd' at the end of humanoid is a very hard sound for most Japanese to pronounce well since there is no solitary 'd' consanant sound in Japanese.
After extensive discussion and debate, they settled on
humanoi d - and from that the MANOI name.
Source: Japanese news reports from the September 21, 2005 press conference.