Just when you thought you’ve seen an iPad being used in all fields of activity, here comes another use. Orangutans at Jungle Island in Miami are using iPads to communicate, or at least try to. The trainers at the Island provided the furry creatures with the slates.

I’m talking specifically about two 8 year old twin orangutans using the tablets to play games and expand vocabulary. They seem to like the iPad, while the older orangutans have shown no interest yet. Miami’s Jungle Island is experiment with the computers and apes, allowing its 6 orangutans to use an iPad as part of a mental stimulation program. The idea began when someone actually used the iPads with dolphins and although the software used here was create for humans with autism, it works well here as well. The screen displays pictures of various objects and a trainer names one of the objects, while the ape presses the associated button.

I’m sure you know that orangutans know and understand sign language, so it’s not hard to introduce the iPad into the equation. Using their hands, the apes can answer simple questions and identify objects. They can even identify body parts and express needs, so this type of communication is useful particularly for detecting disease or a hurt body part. The only problem now is that caretakers have to hold on to the tablets, else the primates could break them. If only Steve Job was here to see this achievement…

  • Pjotr Kyrillitsch

    Quite so! Always knew that the Ipad is for OrangOetangs