Hanson robotics is now getting into the consumer market with a creation they call Zeno. Zeno will be available in 2009 for the price range of $200-$300. Zeno is a robotic companion that can interact with you on an entirely new level that has not been seen before. It’s considered a toy targeting kids but I can see this being purchased by gadget craving adults as well.
Hanson Robotics is collaborating with Massive Software on this one. Massive has built their business on artificial intelligence algorithms used in computer animation for simulating crowds. They started off by developing the computer animation for Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings battle sequences.
The vision and decision making components in Massive Software give Zeno the ability to navigate, make facial expressions, and move his body based on what he sees in his physical environment. The video coming in from Zeno’s eye camera is fed into the Massive part of his brain so that he can move appropriately and respond emotionally to what is going on around him.