Archive for March 28, 2008

Man’s Best Friend Meets Man’s Next Friend

I recently posted one story on the ways an artist proposed to use technology to improve the lives of dogs and another about how researchers used a robotic dog to try to study how docked tails might affect dog-dog interactions.  I still don’t agree that artificial hackles or LED tails will help dogs live more meaningful lives or that using a robotic dog to study how real dogs interact with each other is scientifically valid but…. In a recent bit of internet research I was stunned to see how much time people spend comparing man’s best friend to man’s next friend.

Here’s a couple of examples of how robots might benefit real dogs:

I adored this robotic ball-throwing machine and the incredibly cool dachshund that enjoys playing with it – in moderation.  (but I am quite sure that my kelpie would kill herself if we had one of these…..) 

Here’s a nifty remote robotic dog treat dispenser.  It lets you IM treats to your dog! 

Now here’s some examples of how humans might use robotic dogs to improve our lives: 

Check out the creepy robotic “dog” developed by defense contractors.  Frankly, this one didn’t strike me as particularly doglike.  Was that because it sounds like a hive of electronic bees or perhaps because it because it HAS NO HEAD?  Yuck. 

Hey!  This is the perfect pet for those folks who want a dog but don’t want to bother with training it! 


Is this a robot dog or a human in dog suit mimicking a dog robot?  You decide. 

NSFW robotic dog controlled by a television ventriloquist 

A real dog attacks a robotic dog WITH A LONG TAIL!

March 28, 2008 at 5:33 pm 1 comment

Because A Dog’s Mind is a Terrible Thing to Waste


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March 2008