Gostai and the Sony Robot Dog: Not Your Average Pooch
training, entertaining, and always learning, the average puppy can be
quite the handful. If your home isn't prepared for the real thing,
maybe a robot can offer what you need-and even help organize your
Sony's robot dog has been on the market for almost a
decade, offering a fun alternative to the classic pet. It's not cuddly
soft, but it does offer high entertainment value; the Aibo launched in
1999 with some success, giving owners a chance to train and take care
of their electronic pet. Still, limited functions and low levels of
communication with the owners jaded its preliminary sales targets. In
late 2001, we saw the birth of Aibo puppies, a cheaper version that
also made use of artificial intelligence technology and had a
vocabulary of 75 recognized words. These cute Aibo puppies could read
e-mail, take pictures, and navigate through some basic functions of
your computer. Decked out in Sony Memory Sticks, these animated pups still didn't make it to the level Sony hopefuls had wished for.
the French-based company Gostai brings forth some fresh programming
options in the robot software business. A startup of only eight
employees, this could be one of Microsoft's biggest contenders in the
field of programming. A recent release of a Sony robot dog programmed
with Urbi software, one of the signature personal computing programs,
Gostai is opening up some new avenues for domestic robots. The company
is offering free downloadable versions of its software programs so that
toys and other modules can easily start making use of the application.
The recent unveiling of Gostai's work with the Sony's robot dog was a
huge success; programmers tested the software at a conference in April
where it jived to the tunes of a French band, and enjoyed a high level
of interaction with the crowds.
The result? A stronger
communication channel, easy to program pups, and plenty of options for
upgrading. Gostai is one company that can offer Sony-and other
electronics companies-a fresh take on robotics. Personal robots in the
home aren't just for science fiction enthusiasts in the home; although
we may not be ready for R2-D2 helping out with home chores, a robotic
pup may be a much-needed friend for many lonesome souls; or just a fun
toy for the kids. As pseudo creatures become a fast trend in t he U.S.,
we might start seeing some new additions to the average family of pets.
If you're tired of cleaning up after your much-loved pooch, is it time
to introduce an alternative to the household?