"Hello Daddy"

iRobot the makers of the Roomba robot vacuum have new toys...

we have a Roomba, 2nd generation, which works great in the smaller rooms, or it would if we didn't have books piled everywhere, interspersed with occasional toys, cats and laptop accessories

I like the look of the Looj - robot gutter cleaner - our gutters are a serious pain-in-the-ass to clean and have to be done spring as well as autumn because of the 70+ year old giant oak and its pollen.

But... the ConnectR telepresence robot strikes awe and fear in me...
It is basically a small autonomous robot with audio and video link, (here for details) and remotely steerable.

It is marketed as a toy, security device, pet supervisor and "family telepresence".

Cool toy.
If you have an open plan ranch house you can check if the oven is off, the dog behaving or the back door is not busted, from your laptop (and presumably cell phone, eventually if not already) - definitely a niche market

But, the family telepresence is scary - "be present at family events while traveling",
"read to your kid while away on business"!
Must have... yet, must NOT!
I wonder if it can operate telescopes...

$199 for beta testers, expected to retail at $499 + tax and shipping from a Sharper Image catalog arriving in your mail box Real Soon Now

(h/t Faster Forward)

"After the demo, Angle said that he's had a ConnectR at home for a while, and his daughter--whom, he said, long ago got used to the idea of robots cleaning up after her--likes it. He said she calls it "Daddy" when he talks through it."

- I'm not a small cute robot, I'm a human being!


More like this

Our place is all hardwood and I'm really considering a Scooba. The whole area of floor I'd want it to clean is about 500 square feet.

The only issue is that for some reason the house is almost divided in half. One side is about a half inch lower than the other side. It's a very interesting layout and lots of doors.

We like our Roomba as well. To go along with the gutter cleaner, however, I think iRobot needs to have a robot that puts up and takes down the Christmas lights...

By Patrick Durrell (not verified) on 01 Oct 2007 #permalink

I imagine a few trick-or-treaters are going to encounter the ConnectR telepresence robot...

By Tegumai Bopsul… (not verified) on 01 Oct 2007 #permalink

way too harsh, well, unless you have teenagers, maybe

although for Hallowe'en a taser might not be bad - could probably stick a couple of lasers on the thing too...