Posted: June 17, 2012 by Wildcat in Uncategorized
Tags: , , ,

In 1998, a strange fad swept the nation. Standing a mere 5 inches tall, the gremlin-esque talking robots known as furbies became the season’s must-have toys for kids (much to Hasbro’s delight). The most compelling aspect of furbies wasn’t their strange, half hamster, half owl aesthetic or even their ability to talk; it was that, from the beginning, furbies were advertised as learning robots. A newly purchased furby starts out speaking an entirely made up language called Furbish, but, over time, was said to ‘learn’ English by talking to its owner. As the the instruction manual touted: “The more time you spend with me, the sooner I will be able to speak your language.” (via AI Takes Baby Steps: RoboBaby Learns Words | Science Sushi, Scientific American Blog Network)

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