Jibo: Creepo?

soundtrack time.

How I missed putting this in on the post’s first construction, I don’t know.

I’ve been meaning to write about this since I saw it, but thankfully I only saw it a couple of months ago, not like some of the things I haven’t managed to write about.

One day, someone tweeted that we should google Jibo and see if we were creeped out. Having no idea what he was talking about, I googled it, and found this ad for Jibo.
You bet I was freaked out. As soon as they referred to it as a “family robot”, I felt like I was transported into every scifi movie or episode I had ever seen. This thing can remember things for you, take independent photo and video,it can talk to the internet, read to your kids, all kinds of stuff, and it’s a platform, so developers can build more apps for it, so it can learn how to do even more. You can have all of this for the low low price of $599.

Woe, I could see some people thinking that was totally affordable. That’s like getting an iPad, unlike in the days of Spike, where the price was unknown and probably crazy high.

Suddenly I started seeing visions of the Gideon 4000,
the robot for the family to help out around the house if the guy’s got too much to do, with a little bit of Mary25
especially when they start reading “The Three Little Pigs”, sprinkled with a tiny bit of Valerie23,
the first robot companion. The ad and the intro reminded me about how all of these episodes start, with the happy demonstration of what these units can do for you, Right down to the part where they get Jibo to talk, as if he’s human, then cut Jibo off like he’s a machine when they don’t want to see his moves. God, I’ve watched a little too much Outer Limits.

But even without all those episodes, the idea that the thing can snap pictures, remember who knows what and track who knows what is…kinda freaky. Am I the only one who’s weirded out when the robot is in the kid’s bedroom at the end of the night? This Drunk Tech review

sums it up pretty well, with a few prickish comments thrown in. I love technology, and realize how much it has done for me, but I don’t think I want a Jibo.

Aside: Not too much later, I saw an ad, or something, for something called Musio.

Although just as able to track and remember things and try to be all artificial intelligence-like, it didn’t immediately freak me out. Why not? Is it the voice?

So am I weird? Do you think everyone will want a Jibo? Will I look at this post years down the road and laugh at myself for being afraid of new technology?

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1 Comment

  1. Musio is almost a little more disconcerting because it looks like they’re trying to trick you into your own destruction by way of child-like innocence whereas Jibo is just all like “hey man, I’m gonna take creepy pictures of your kids now, dig?”

    Also, for a bit there I couldn’t decide who sounded more robotic, Musio or Jake the host.

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