Zeno Robot Boy May One Day Replace Inventor's SonS

David Hanson, known to Giz readers for some brilliant-but-creepy robotics, has unveiled his masterpiece of five years: Zeno, by no coincidence also the name of Hanson's 18-month-old son.

Zeno Robot Boy May One Day Replace Inventor's Son

Zeno Robot Boy May One Day Replace Inventor's SonS

Zeno Robot Boy May One Day Replace Inventor's SonS

Zeno Robot Boy May One Day Replace Inventor's SonS

A 6lb. 17" tall artificial person with an expressive face covered in something Hanson calls "frubber," Zeno was designed for edutainment purposes: conversation and emotional responses. Hanson proudly told the AP:

"It's a representation of robotics as a character animation medium, one that is intelligent. It sees you and recognizes your face. It learns your name and can build a relationship with you."

Zeno will be on display this week at Wired's NextFest conference in LA. Hanson's goal is to start selling Zenos on the open market for $200 to $300, and here we believe he means selling the robot toy, and not his son. But that kid better watch out, because if he misbehaves one more time, that's it, buster, he's gonna find himself on a shelf at the damn Toys "R" Us. [AP]