Friday, June 19, 2015

Google's Creepy Teddy

Creepy Teddy
Everyone should be able to still remember Teddy, the super-computer toy, from the 2001 film "Artificial Intelligence," Right? Well, Google might be trying to make one just like that.

On May 2015, the company filed a patent for a toy that can control other Wi-Fi-connected devices. This could be one of Google's creepiest patents yet - especially if movies like "Chuckie" still give everyone nightmares.

Imagine a teddy bear outfitted with sensors and cameras.

If it senses you're looking at it, the fuzzy toy will rotate its head and look back at you. Once it receives and recognizes a voice command prompt, you can then tell it to control media devices in your home (e.g. turn on your music or TV).

Google says the patent application isn't an indication the company will actually make or sell this connected toy.

"We hold patents on a variety of ideas - some of those ideas later mature into real products or services, some don't," the company said in an email statement to CNNMoney.

Even if Google doesn't make one of these Internet of Things (IoT) devices, you can bet other companies will in the near future. Amazon already has a standalone home assistance gadget called the Echo, which can be prompted to control playlists and or look up information on the Web if you start your request by addressing it as "Alexa."

A connected speaker system called Ubi performs similar functions.

Interestingly, one of Google's April Fools' Day gags this year was a stuffed panda built to be a cuddlier face of its search engine...

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