December 17, 2014      

‘Robot creep,’ personal robots, and consumer electronics

If you’ve attended the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in past years, you undoubtedly have become aware of “robot creep” slowly and what seems inexorably seeping into many CES venues and product categories.

In 2014, getting into a “robot state of mind at CES” was easy. It began as subtly as taking the monorail that transports attendees to the Las Vegas Convention Center (LVCC) — the monorail is a robot.

CES 2015 logo

Alighting from that robot, the first things spied were more robots: BMW’s self-driving roadsters tooling around an obstacle course.

Inside the LVCC were more driverless vehicles, plus robot home cleaners for dust, grass, pool flotsam, mushed leaves in roof gutters, plus all of those robots in a box that make things additively, a.k.a. 3D printers.

Then there were the 4moms baby strollers with their smartly hidden robotics. Then there were those home healthcare exoskeletons — wearable robots –helping people to stand, ambulate, and feel useful again. And don’t forget about Nest, the smart robot thermostat on a wall.

At CES last year, it was like robots where everywhere. And they were!

Your human awareness of these machines more than likely was partly a perception of how terribly different and how fascinating robots were when stacked against other electronics at CES.

This year, the robots you’ll encounter everywhere at CES are not so much infatuated with the dust in your rug or how warm or cool the house is by day and night. No, these robots are infatuated with you/us.

What a pleasant switch that is, huh?

Getting personal in 2015

Last year, your inner sense may have been pointing to the intelligence factor that set off many ?smart? electronic devices from all other electronic devices at CES. In fact, more and more ?smart? electronics seemed to be everywhere, as if manufacturers were racing to cram intelligence into their every product.

Consumer robotics survey cover

Robots, as well as other electronics harboring robot creep, seemed to be the smartest electronic devices at CES. Intelligent electronics caused the most stir and had the pizzazz to draw the biggest crowds. No wonder manufacturers are scrambling around dolling out smarts to all their goods.

For 2015, robots have raised the bar again: They’re not only intelligent; now they’re also aware of us. Awareness, geez!

The damn things are aware of us! Like a pet, only more so.

Robots have gone personal. They listen, they speak, they react, they do what they’re told, they’re a help to us on a personal level, and way more.

At CES for 2015, the next new thing is the personal robot that’s not only intelligent, but also aware and that has talents and capabilities that match up well with humans.

Join us on Jan. 8 for the Robotics Trends half-day conference session, sponsored by Robotics Business Review, as we take a closer look at this newest robot revolutions: personal robots.

Don’t forget to download your free copy:

Robotics Business Review‘s Consumer Robotics Survey 2014

See related:

Consumer Robotics Webcast: Human Touch Meets High Tech

See related:

Research Report: Consumer Robotics: 2015

The CES Consumer Robotics half-day session

The Consumer Robotics half-day session is going to be wall-to-wall discourse on why this convergence of “intelligent” and “aware” personal robots is happening to robotics and happening to us, where it’s all going, what’s driving it, and why it’s all headed to our homes, families, jobs, and our interactions with others.

This year’s half-day session is to the max with personal robots that are soon to be your family’s next best friend; your can’t-live-without, indispensable, all-purpose, talkative home companion and loyal member of the family.

Actually, when you think about it, don’t we all need something like that? Really!

What: Consumer Robotics Half-day Session 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
When: Jan. 8, 2015
Where: Venetian, Level 1, Casanova 602

Session 1: 9 to 10 a.m.

A Robot in Every Home

Cynthia Breazeal assess the technologies and development methods driving socially intelligent robots as well as how these high-tech companions will impact the new nuclear family — from young children to the elderly.

Presenter: Cynthia Breazeal
Founder and CEO, Jibo Inc.

Social robotics pioneer and innovator, professor at MIT’s Media Lab, and director of MIT’s Personal Robots Group.

Session 2: 10:15 to 11:15 a.m.

Wearable Robots: From Healing to Enhancement

In addition to having miraculous implications for the infirm, robotic exoskeletons are the key to human enhancement. Are they truly the “jeans of the future?” Russ Angold unpacks the answers, revealing the key drivers and developments in this disruptive and burgeoning global market.

Presenter: Russ Angold
Co-founder and CTO, Ekso Bionics

Formerly vice president of engineering at Ekso Bionics, Russ provided many of the engineering concepts that shape today?s current designs of Ekso, ExoHiker, ExoClimber and HULC.

Session 3: 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Robots & Society: Attitudes, Obstacles and Opportunities

The technology has improved by leaps and bounds, but has seeing robots in the headlines impacted consumer attitudes towards the technology? Presenters weigh in on the technology, business, and legal issues dealing with the rate of adoption, the regulatory landscape, and untapped opportunities for robots.

Presenter: Alison Sander
Director, Center for Sensing & Mining the Future, Boston Consulting Group

Alison Sander’s Center for Sensing & Mining the Future tracks more than 100 leading trends shaping our world, including the rise of robotics and automation.

She is an MBA graduate of Harvard Business School, Harvard Law School, and the University of Chicago. She’s also a member of the Asia Society, the Council on Foreign Relations, and the Association of Professional Futurists. Sander is a noted speaker on future trends and brings creative and innovative perspectives to senior boards and executive teams.

Presenter: Rob Nail
CEO and associate founder, Singularity University

Rob Nail is also a co-founder of Alite Designs, is an active angel investor and advisor, and holds degrees in mechanical, materials science, and manufacturing engineering from the University of California, Davis, and Stanford University.

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DON’T FORGET to visit the Robotics Marketplace at the 2015 CES

to encounter the next generation of robots from around the globe!