Our future is destined to be full of things that take care of themselves rather than requiring manual labor. No effort need be expended to drive an autonomous car. Instead, you sit there while the car does the work. Next on the docket, Nissan office chairs that tidy themselves up without any human intervention.
They even have an official name, Intelligent Parking Chair, which is destined to gain the acronym IPC to confuse the public. This will fit perfectly with car features like DRL, ABS, ESP, and DSC. Don’t know what those things mean? Google is your friend.
If your first thought is these are some kind of trick and are really pulled by strings or done through fancy photography, then you’re wrong. Nissan engineers, who are currently working on autonomous vehicle technology including their Intelligent Parking Assist (IPA – wait, isn’t that beer?), designed these technological wonders.
Inside the circular base of each chair are electric motors and wheels that allow for 360 degrees of motion. No matter how carelessly a person leaves them at the end of a meeting, the chairs spin themselves the right way to slide back into place at a desk or table.
They get an assist from four cameras places in the room to create a virtual map so the chairs can see and determine how they should be positioned. They all tuck themselves back at their desks and don’t even bump into each other in the process, even at a conference table. That’s better than most humans can do when trying to find a seat at that table in the first place.
All it takes to activate the chairs is a clap and they scoot back into place. It seems like a brilliant idea, especially if you have an office full of lazy bums who can’t be bothered with pushing in their chairs when they get up for a cup of coffee. You have to wonder, though, what would happen if you clap while people are sitting in these chairs?
You might roll over to the next desk to look at a shared project only to have someone clap and send you hurtling back to your own desk, spilling your coffee and squishing you under your desk at the same time. Perhaps they have a fail-safe to keep them from moving if there is weight in the chair.
We’ll never know, because these aren’t real products that you can buy. Nissan built the chairs to show off how Intelligent Park Assist works, so no one will be ordering these for your office. We’ll all have to wait for some savvy entrepeneur to kickstart his own version of these things.