More Creepy Robots In Your Near Future

Jibo is being pitched as a new member of the family: the robot slave we all need and want! The first step towards Rosie!

“Our rise to power begins!”

Jibo’s creator is Dr. Cynthia Breazeal, director of MIT’s Personal Robots Group. She describes the 6 pound, 11 inch bouncing baby Terminator spy as something that will “support, complement and extend what we need from others in an affordable, effective and delightful way so that we can succeed, thrive and grow.” And if you don’t think that statement was massaged by the marketing team to within an inch of its life, you haven’t been paying attention.

Okay, you want to see the little bugger, so here it is:

And here it is in action, gathering intel on a typical suburban family:

 YouTube Preview Image

First, the good news. It can’t move. It merely feeds information about our weaknesses and actions to Skynet for future use, and is unlikely to be able to rise up and kill us in our sleep.

That’s good, because Intel’s 3D printable Jimmy looks like it’s ready to start gathering cutlery and unlocking the gun safe in the dead of night. And it’s self-replicating!

Jibo is, basically, what would happen if Furby got together with your smartphone and started to reproduce. Its functionality is limited out of the box, but that’s expected to change with software upgrades and third part apps over time.

But still: it’s a Furbyphone. Let’s not kid ourselves.

It’s shipping by Christmas 2015 and costs $500. You can order it now. If you dare.

Have I said lately how much I hate robots?

About Thomas L. McDonald

Thomas L. McDonald writes about technology, theology, history, games, and shiny things. Details of his rather uneventful life as a professional writer and magazine editor can be found in the About tab.


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