What is the latest fad this Christmas? A Pleo!
Pleo is the latest creation of UGOBE, a privately-held company from California that specializes in the development of robotics that "transforms inanimate objects into lifelike creatures."
Pleo, a one-week-old robotic dinosaur that interacts with its owner by moving organically, expressing emotion and autonomously exploring and responding to the world around him. Software shipped with Pleo allows for subtle shaping of personality and temperament. Future free software updates will allow Pleo to develop a unique personality based largely upon how he's raised. Plus, owners can go to Pleoworld.com to connect with other owners, find training tips and download new enhancements to Pleo. Pleo has a sophisticated sensory system has devices that enable it to hear, to see, to sense touch, and to detect objects.
The battery charge apparently lasts for about 1 hour and then Pleo starts to get sleepy. It even makes little cooing noises.
Check out one of the many videos (below) about Pleo on YouTube.
What are the "guts" of this new interactive robotic marvel?
- 32-bit microprocessors: central and image processing
- 8-bit sub-processors: motor control
- 14 motors
- Over 100 custom-designed gears
- Camera-based vision system: light detection and navigation
- Microphones: binaural hearing
- Skin sensors: head, chin, shoulders, back, feet
- Foot switches: surface detection
- Force-feedback sensors: one per joint
- Orientation tilt sensor: body position
- Infrared mouth sensor: object detection
- Mini USB port for online downloads
- SD card slot for Pleo add-ons
- Infrared transceiver for Pleo-to-Pleo communication
- 2 speakers located in Pleo's mouth and back
- Rechargeable and replaceable NiMH battery pack
- Recharges in 4 hours; provides approximately 1 hour of operation
There are plans to release a PDK (Pleo Development Kit) - "to make hacking Pleo easier."
An amazing interactive toy that engages with its users. I remember the days we got excited over a pet rock.....times have changed :)