As they scurry about the house, weaving around coffee tables and discarded shoes, Roombas seem almost lifelike at times. Now, a software developer has further blurred the line between machine and life form -- by giving his Roomba a voice.
Michael Reeves has modified his robotic vacuum to make it scream whenever it bumps into something. And not just guttural screams; it often uses obscene language, especially when it runs into something more than once.
Yet despite its human qualities, there's no danger of Roombas deciding to pull aTerminatoron mankind, Reeves says. "All that you really need to know is that when a collision gets detected by the sensors, sound gets played from a Raspberry Pi to a Bluetooth speaker," he says.
Has technology become too important in our lives? Is life easier now than it was 30 years ago?
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