October 29, 2009

Tekno Newborn Puppies


Tekno now has a Newborn Puppy to go with his older brother. The minibot can go forward, right and left, and is voice activated. He has eyes that light up in several colors to express emotion, his ears flap and he will even carry his toy bone. The pup has presence sensors so when you give him a pat, he will respond. Best of all, he won't need house breaking.

Via Tekno Pets

Sheila Franklin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

October 19, 2009

Beware of Robots Killing You While You Sleep


Every once in a while we find another "robot turns on owner" study and the latest concerns security issues. Tadayoshi Kohno, a University of Washington assistant professor, feels that they may not become evil as they become smarter. He claims, "There is a much greater and more near-term risk, and that's bad people who can use robots to do bad things."

During a study done during the past year, Kohno and his team found security weaknesses in Spykee, Rovio, and RoboSapien V2.These are their results:

  • The robots' presence is easily detected by distinctive messages sent over the home's wireless network.
  • The robots' audio and video streams can be intercepted on the home's wireless network or in some cases captured over the Internet.
  • Only some robots give an audible or other alert when a user logs on, letting people nearby know that someone new is accessing the data.
  • Only some robots periodically generate a noise or other signal when stationary, reminding people nearby that the robot is collecting data.

So remember, when you turn in tonight, take out the batteries of your bot before he/she smothers you with your pillow. And tomorrow, run out and grab a mini-cowbell so that you can hear him/her coming.

Via Science Daily

Sheila Franklin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

October 15, 2009

Toby Still Entertains


We have noticed that the holidays are creeping up on us in commercials and everywhere we look on the Net. Fisher Price's Toby has been around for a while, but who could resist the toy that talks, zooms around on wheels, lights up, is 8" tall and needs 3 AA batteries?

Via Fisher Price Toby

Sheila Franklin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

October 14, 2009

Voice Activated Chuck the Truck


Get a head start on your holiday shopping with Chuck, Playskool's voice-activated dump truck. He speaks over 40 phrases and sounds and will come when he is called. The toy vehicle literally jiggles when he moves and is packed with book and 3C batteries. By the way, we take away a few PC points from the company who claims in their TV ad that Chuck is the perfect gift for "your boy."

Via Playskool Chuck

Sheila Franklin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

October 12, 2009

OmniZero.9 Transforms at Robo-One

We knew they would be out there somewhere. Takeshi Maeda created OmniZero.9 (his ninth robot) for the recent Robo-One competition. The 3 ft. tall Optimus Prime-looking bot can change into a vehicle by remote control. His head also flips to give a free ride to Takeshi. We may soon see a whole horde of Transformers, eh?

Via Daily Mail

Sheila Franklin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

Elmo Live Encore, Twice as Obnoxious as the Original

If your eldest toddler didn't go completely bonkers listening to the antics of Elmo Live last year, your younger one will surely do so with the new Elmo Live Encore from Fisher Price. The new and supposedly improved muppet has new songs, jokes and enough banter to keep them amused for a least a couple of days during the holidays. In his words, "Who writes this stuff?"

Via Elmo Live Encore

Sheila Franklin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

September 29, 2009

R2-D2 Mod Plays Games, Literally


Pop Sci reader Brian De Vitis took an R2-D2 cooler and created one of the kewlest mods we have ever seen. He gutted 8 game consoles so all the ports would fit in the right direction and still had space enough for a sound system and a projector! Want to date yourself? See how many of the controllers you can identify.

Via Pop Sci

Sheila Franklin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

September 23, 2009

Pet Care, Long Distance Surveillance


This silly WiFi Controlled prototype has been dubbed the Pet Care Robot. Utilizing a web interface, it supposedly allows you to check on your pet at home through its eerie camera eyes that work even at night, talk to it through a built-in speaker and play fetch with remote controlled ball.


The bot's site claims "Lemme babysit your pet," reminding us of a SNL skit with Chris Farley and Adam Sandler "Let the [Herlihy] boy walk your dog." We say skip the real pet and teach the PCR to vacuum.

Via Mint Pass

Sheila Franklin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

September 21, 2009

Thingamaplush Cuddly Bot

Jeff-o decided to make a plush robot for his 2 year old daughter using a Bleep Labs' Thingamakit and Thingamagoop synthesizer noise maker. His instructions show you how you can do likewise in 11 steps. Pretty cute, but we are not sure that Thingamaplush would be the safest toy for a toddler.

Via Instructables

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Toy RC Sub Put to Work in Italian Sewers


An Italian company has been using a Neptune SB-1 remote control submarine to run fiber cables through sewers. The mini-sub is made by Thunder Tiger and comes at a price of about $600.00 from hobby shops. They say that the toy can reach almost every home that is connected to the sewer system and saves time, money and human resources. If other countries consider the idea, then it would a decent way to replace those who must go down and brave alligators.

Via Hobby Media (translated)

Sheila Franklin at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

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