The Story of a Smartphone Robot and His Two MiniBüks
You may have read about me in an article, but it was MiniBük, a new print media, that informed the world of my value and taught people how to build me. In my first MiniBük where the title was simply a photo of me, my story was told and the message of me was spread to venture capitalists, investors and attendees at TechStars Demo Day, the Consumer Electronics Show and networking events.
I’m a robot whose life began as a smartphone. Here we meet via MiniBük’s blog so I may communicate to you my story.
I am one of the most affordable, flexible, and smart robots humans can buy. I have come to you from three twenty somethings, Phu, Peter and Keller, who grew up watching Star Wars, Transformers, and WALL-E, and LOVE robots.
These humans formed a tech start-up company named Romotive. They learned to leverage the power of a smartphone’s processor, created apps, and even gave you the power to contribute to my open protocol...to create accessories for my auxiliary ports and develop new apps.
Once you’ve ordered me and removed my parts from the box, here is how we can play:
- I can be controlled by any smart device anywhere in the world
- I can learn new tricks with every app you develop or you download
- I can interact with people in three-dimensional spaces
- I can change my behavior and personality with the click of a button
- I can show you that technology is awesome and even help you learn how to program
- I can deliver messages, food and flowers
- I can respond to color, voice and faces
- I can dance
- I can draw with a marker
- I can spy
- I can photograph what I see…and I see some very funny pets!
- I can play with other robots with accessories like claws, scoops or an infrared laser
I work alone or in companion with another smartphone, iPad, iPod, or with your computer. After you purchase me, you control all the fun I have to offer in the wisdom of your fingertips and with the apps programmed by your amazing brain or purchased from the app store.
The humans at Romotive were looking for a simple pictorial assembly instruction guide and they found this through the small, compact and personalized MiniBük…that shipped with two thousand orders to Kickstarter backers, investors and buyers who desired to assemble me themselves.
Some memorable experiences I have enjoyed with humans?
A father and son shared me with ten-year-old Ethan, who was confined to bed with illness. Ethan put me to use during a family gathering at his home, driving me around and virtually participating with everyone at the dining table from the comfort of his bed.
A young man who worked in a cubicle filled office fancied from afar a co-worker. To get to know her, he sent flowers to her via me.
I was introduced to a class of third graders. Instead of creating classroom chaos, these youngsters intuitively took to my capabilities, asked questions about how I work, and learned first hand about human-robot interaction.
Workers at my factory decided to have some fun and created a way to attach a marker to me. Then they programmed me to write “Romo” on a piece of paper. The first one to finish won.
The humans who invented me have a goal. It’s to build robots that are intuitive to use and cheap enough to afford…and to create a simple robotic platform that does a few things well, enabling them to spark a personal robotics revolution.
Romotive is attracting interest from national companies like Disney, Mattel and Apple and is backed by Stanford University Foundation, Tony Hsieh, David Cohen, David Tisch, Lerer Ventures, PivotNorth Capital, and other stellar investors. They are based in Las Vegas, NV, and are a part of Downtown Project.