Next Big Thing – emotional robots

The Emotive Robotic Avatar from Hammacher Schlemmer uses 19 concealed motors to express himself

It’s a what?

Shhh… you’ll hurt his feelings. He’ll get angry, embarrassed or sad, or maybe a bit confused. Let’s keep him happy.

Is that it? Five emotions? That’s only four more than Action Man.

Ah, but Action Man didn’t use 19 concealed motors to express himself. The Emotive Robotic Avatar from Hammacher Schlemmer does. Although on some Action Men you could move the eyes to make him look shifty. Even so, our emotional robot has at least three more emotions than your cheap plastic GI Joe rip-off.

So, no moving eyes then?

Actually, our emobot’s eyes light up green or blue to indicate how he’s feeling, his antennae rise and fall and he can move his arms and torso. Plus he talks.

So did Action Man.

I think you’ll find that the Emotive Robotic Avatar’s controls are a bit more involved than pulling a bit of string. He’s puppeteered by a human via the zeitgeist of modern gadgetry – a tablet.

This is starting to sound expensive.

Emotions aren’t cheap, you know? The Emotive Robotic Avatar costs US$65,000. That’s US$13,000 per emotion. When he smiles at you cheekily, it’s not quite priceless, but it’s not far off. You can buy one here. Or keep waiting for your sentient Action Man to come along.

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