The business and culture of our digital lives,
from the L.A. Times

« Previous Post | Technology Home | Next Post »

CES Video: Robots!

January 12, 2009 |  2:58 pm

LAS VEGAS -- Robots for consumers have moved beyond vacuuming and mowing lawns. They're now being used to amuse, educate, communicate and potentially heal people. At CES, there were examples of all these possible uses. We shot video of three. Kowatec's Hexapodinno robot is a six-legged robot with visual sensors. The first video above shows the amusing robot in action. The other two videos are after the jump.

The second video below is of a humanoid robot, also made by Taiwanese manufacturer Kowatec, that can be purchased in pieces, assembled and programmed to make any number of customized actions. Designed for the classroom, the robots cost between $600 and $1,000 each and come with a manual that teachers can use to inform students about basic robotics and electronics.

Another robot, the Paro, takes a different approach. Called a "therapeutic robot," Paro is used in hospitals and nursing homes to help patients relax. It looks like a stuffed animal, in this case a furry baby seal that reacts to touch and voice commands. In Japan, where people are more accustomed to seeing robots in a benevolent light, Paro has been making the rounds in nursing homes since 2003. It made its debut in the U.S. at CES this year.

-- Alex Pham

Video by Alex Pham / Los Angeles Times