Never mind a new iPhone5, what I want is Baxter the affordable robot.
An American company, Rethink Robotics, will soon be selling this bit of kit at £15,000.
Unlike other industrial robots, Baxter is designed to mingle with humans.
At 6ft tall, he is a gentle giant. Hermless and never nae bother, as they say in Dundee. Baxter can carry out simple tasks but is a bit slow. He could easily have got by as a boilermaker in the shipyards, apart maybe from the hermless bit.
The breakthrough with Baxter is that he does not require complicated programming by computer experts. Which could make him suitable for household use.
You get his attention by holding his wrist. Then put his arms through the required motions and press a few buttons. Many women will have used similar techniques with husbands.
Unlike husbands, Baxter has a TV screen for a head and with a face that shows emotions of understanding, interest, concern, and happiness.
He can be trained to pick up socks from bedroom floors, take dishes to the sink, and put down a toilet seat. Baxter can be switched off in an emergency with a big red button on his chest.
As the technology improves, Baxter will have all the motions to make a cup of tea. One day, he may even be able to speak but only when he is spoken to.
I like the name Baxter because it sounds reliably Scottish. Rethink Robotics was going to call him Cooper (as in co-operation) but the name was taken.
Baxter is an old Scots word for baker. He might be able to make scones, or at least a slice of toast.
I look forward to having Baxter get me a bottle of Highland Spring from the fridge and then hold the drink to my lips as I lie on the sofa. I may even tell him to get a bucket of sand and sing the Desert Song. He could take the dog for a (very slow) walk and use the pooper scooper.
Rangers FC could buy a Baxter, show him videos of the legendary Slim Jim of that ilk, and put him in the midfield. His unerring computer accuracy would be perfect for free kicks.
One of my Baxter's tasks would be to show me how to work an iPhone.
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