FedEx robots called Roxo appeared in New York City for a preview party of the company’s Small Business Saturday event. Despite not being there for testing, New York City’s mayor tweeted that they weren’t welcome, and criticized FedEx for taking jobs away from humans.
FedEx told TechCrunch that the bots were there for a preview party for its Small Business Saturday event and are not testing in New York. Even this promotional event was too much for city officials concerned with congestion and bots taking jobs from humans.
After reports of the bot sightings, the mayor tweeted that FedEx didn’t receive permission to deploy the robots; he also criticized the company for using a bot to perform a task that a New Yorker could do. The New York Department of Transportation has sent FedEx a cease-and-desist order to stop operations the bots, which TechCrunch has viewed.
From boingboing: “‘Under what circumstances and to what extent would adults be willing to sacrifice robots to save human lives?’ That was the question posed by researchers at Radboud University in Nijmegen in the Netherlands and Ludwig-Maximilians-Universitaet (LMU) in Munich.” The results have implications for how we’ll design robots with apparent human feelings.
An Amazon robot sent 24 workers to the hospital after it tore open a can of bear spray in a warehouse, while 30 workers were treated on scene.
Sphero announced its newest robot, Sphero BOLT, on Monday. The sphere-shaped robot is targeted at the education market, but is available to everyone. It packs an array of infrared and ambient light sensors, LEDs, and a digital compass in its clear body. You can program it from a wide range of devices including iPhones, iPads, Android phones and tablets, Kindle, Macs, and PCs. Sphero BOLT is priced at US$149.99 and is available at the Sphere website.
Adam Christianson from the Maccast and Andrew Orr join Jeff Gamet to share their thoughts on whether or not Apple is doing enough to protect our privacy, plus they have some first impressions on Anki’s new Vector robot.
Anki’s Cozmo is a fun fist-size robot for education and play, and now the company is taking its compact robots to the next level with Vector. Unlike Cozmo, Vector doesn’t need your smartphone to supplement its brain, and it uses artificial intelligence to learn. It’s also designed to be more of an assistant and can learn names and faces, as well as link to the internet to find answers to your questions. The idea is to make Vector your companion instead of just a robot toy. There’s a Kickstarter so you can get a Vector for US$199.99 on October 9th, and it’ll be available to the general public for $249.99 on October 12th.
John Martellaro and Kelly Guimont join Jeff Gamet to talk about Apple’s 2018 third fiscal quarter earnings, the company’s R&D budget, and the possibility of an Apple personal robot.
John Martellaro and Andrew Orr join Jeff Gamet to look at how Tim Cook is perceived as a CEO and leader, plus they share their thoughts on the demise of the Kuri robot.
Mayfield Robotics shut down production of its Kuri robot and is refunding pre-order deposits.
If you’re a kid between 8 and 12 years old, it’s time to sign up for Apple Camp. This year’s programs include Coding with Sphero Robots, Beat Making and Songwriting with GarageBand, and Telling Stories with Clips. The programs are hosted at local Apple stores and are 90 minutes a day for three days throughout July. The programs are all free and they fill up fast so be sure to sign up right away. You can check out the program descriptions and sign up at the Apple Camp website.
Apple has made no announcements. There aren’t even any leaks or rumors. But if Apple were to build a family service/companion robot, what would it be like? John ponders.
Kelly Guimont and John Martellaro join Jeff Gamet to talk about what a personal robot from Apple could be, plus they explain what’s going on with the “Yanny or Laurel” meme.
Amazon is reportedly working on a home robot code-named Vesta to ship in 2019, which means it’s time for Apple to step up its own robot efforts.
Dave Hamilton and Andrew Orr join Jeff Gamet to talk about why macOS and iOS won’t merge into a single operating system for now, and they look at how the iPhone’s long life span stands in contrast to Greenpeace criticism.
Greenpeace criticized Apple’s new iPhone recycling robot Daisy saying the company should instead design iPhones that can stay in use longer—a request that seems odd considering the company supports iOS 11 on the five year old iPhone 5s.
Andrew Orr and John Martellaro join Jeff Gamet to look at a survey showing how consumer use their smart speakers, plus they talk about the future of companion robots.
LAS VEGAS – Somnox showed their sleep aid robot to Jeff Gamet at CES 2018. It helps you relax and fall asleep, and you can check it out in this video interview.
LAS VEGAS – Kuri is an amazingly sophisticated and cute smart home robot that’s ready to roll into your house. Mayfield Robotics shows off their cool personal robot to Jeff Gamet at CES 2018.
Let’s be honest: Who doesn’t want a battle crab robot in their livingroom? That’s the distilled essence of living in the future, and exactly what Reach Robotics is giving us with its MekaMon. The MekaMon is a 4-legged robot you control with your iPhone or iPad for games and to battle against other MekaMon robots—in real life or AR. It’s is amazingly cool, and you’ll have to pay a trip to the Apple Store (online or in person) to get yours. MekaMon is priced at US$299.95 and is available now.
If you were excited about the prospect of having your own personal robot flying around your house you’ll have to keep dreaming because the Aevena Aire Kickstarter project has officially shut down.