Researchers at Japan’s Saitama University’s Human-Robot Interaction Center have built a robotic wheelchair that can track and then follow companions, autonomously. In other words, the “built-in distance sensor and camera system tracks the position of the companion’s shoulders, anticipates the direction the person wants to go based on that, and follows him or her accordingly.” Video after the break.

The wheelchair can also automatically avoid obstacles, for example people coming the other way. What’s also cool is that, according to the makers, it’s even possible to let two of the wheelchairs follow a single companion.

[via Crunchgear]