Russian Androids in Development on “Cyborg Island”

As Isabelle Khurshudyan recently reported on, 5,600 miles east of Moscow, not far from Vladivostok’s hills in Russky Island, the Kremlin hopes to create a hub for robotics and artificial intelligence innovation. In 2017, speaking to a group of students, President Putin said regarding AI and robotics, “whoever becomes the leader in this sphere will become the ruler of the world.” In 2018, Putin created the Far East High Technology Fund to invest in technology companies willing to have at least a portion of their operations based in the area, which has been nicknamed “Cyborg Island.”

A Putin-commissioned government fund is investing in projects ranging from Motorica’s prosthetics to Promobot, which creates eerily lifelike robots. Local robotics schools for children as young as 4 have become trendy. “We have a dream,” said Artur Biktimirov, a neurosurgeon partnered with high-tech prosthetics developer Motorica, which has some operations on the island and plans to expand its presence. Biktimirov hopes Motorica is the first in a tech boom there.