November 16, 2005

The things that should bot be

Incidentally, I have an article in the current issue of Cargo in which I review some robots. The one I most wanted to keep was the Aibo (because it is a fucking robot dog, people), followed closely by Lego Mindstorms (coming in second only because it requires a certain amount of actual work to play with -- but programming it was pretty damn fun, honestly). The one I least wanted to see ever again was the Robosapien, which seems like a terrific amusement for children and a terrific annoyance for adults, with a "speech" capability that mostly consists of one-liners whose amusement value doesn't last.

Posted by Francis at 10:21 AM

As a joke, my parents once bought me a robo-dog. It wasn't great: It sort of marched in place, occasionally made a dog-like noise and its tail kept falling off. It took me years to throw the thing out, though, because I kept looking at it and thinking: This isn't trash, it's a dog! I once even put it in the garbage and then took it back out again.

But now, I'm afraid to say, it's roaming some landfill. I hope he's happy out there.

Posted by: jason at November 16, 2005 12:31 PM

My brother-in-law has a Robosapien. At least, I think that's what it is. It scares me, because there's no way that thing follows Asimov's Three Laws. Also, it won't make me eggs, so what the hell good is it?

Posted by: Erin at November 16, 2005 12:44 PM

My nephew wanted Robosapien more than anything last Christmas. Until he saw Roboraptor this year by the same people. Now I gotta think of some way to get him to forget about that one, too. I find it annoying for the same reasons you did. And for $99 you should expect more.

Posted by: Toonhead! at November 16, 2005 12:54 PM

There were actually things I liked about the Robosapien -- it's ability to pick things up by hand was fairly impressive, and the gadget you used to tell it where to walk was really cool. (You'd point a beam of light at the floor, and the robot would see the spot of light and follow it around, just like a cat with one of those laser pointer dealies, but not quite so spastic.) And considering it costs, like, a tenth of what Aibo costs, it doesn't seem like a bad deal, pricewise. But really, the annoyance factor outweighed all of those things for me.

Posted by: Francis at November 16, 2005 01:03 PM

I'm afraid of robots now. The last few paragraphs of the linked post explain why.

Posted by: Orange at November 16, 2005 08:10 PM

The head of wowwee robotics (the robosapien people) visited my robot lab the other day. He gave us a robot dog, but it takes like ten billion batteries so we haven't turned it on.

Posted by: Cyn at November 17, 2005 03:16 AM

You have a robot lab? Too awesome. Oh, wait, you probably mean your school has a robot lab, not that you personally have a robot lab. Still.

The dog is probably better than the Robosapien, since I assume it doesn't make wisecracks. Although perhaps that is not a safe assumption.

Posted by: Francis at November 17, 2005 08:24 AM

I do research in a robot lab. And the wowwee robotics guy came again, and we now have a robosapien and two roboraptors. It's like Christmas! (Although we are working with social robotics, which is all computer vision and machine learning, which has virtually nothing to do with these sorts of mechanical robots.)

Posted by: Cyn at November 17, 2005 09:02 PM

I really like the world of warcraft gold!

Posted by: world of warcraft gold at October 22, 2013 06:49 PM
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