When MIT roboticists wanted to launch an automated domestic vacuum cleaner for the masses, some of their backers balked at calling it a "robot." People wouldn't accept a robot in their homes, they said.
Ten years and more than 6 million sales later, iRobot's Roomba has proved that robots are very welcome. In fact, we can't wait for them to do more than just suck up dirt.
Roomba marks a milestone today, a decade since first rolling off the production line in 2002. In branding the machine, iRobot, a military-robotics company, tried to convey a sense of movement and fun along with "room" to emphasize being at home. The "Roomba" is now in homes around the world. … Read more