Twitter-powered Knitbot crafts ugly Christmas sweaters

Budweiser UK launches a publicity campaign around designated drivers with a robot that feeds on Twitter mentions to knit holiday sweaters.

Amanda Kooser
Freelance writer Amanda C. Kooser covers gadgets and tech news with a twist for CNET. When not wallowing in weird gear and iPad apps for cats, she can be found tinkering with her 1956 DeSoto.
Amanda Kooser
Budweiser Knitbot
The Knitbot has a bit of a steampunk look to it. Budweiser UK

Beer, sweaters, Twitter, and a hardworking robot are converging to promote designated drivers during the holiday season. This unlikely combination comes from Budweiser UK, which has Knitbot, a Twitter-powered knitting machine, busy making unattractive sweaters for drivers who elect to stay sober and make sure their friends get home safe.

What's known in the US as the "ugly Christmas sweater" is known in the UK as the "ugly Christmas jumper." The more #Jumper4des hashtags tweeted, the more jumpers get made.

The sweaters are appropriately unsightly. They are knitted in red and white with the message "Merry Christmas! Celebrate responsibly" across the chest.

Snowflake patterns and a couple of Clydesdale horses complete the design. It probably won't top your Uncle Marty's reindeer-and-Santa sweater extravaganza, but it won't win any fashion awards, either.

The Budweiser UK Facebook page will offer fans an opportunity to win a sweater, which is only to be worn in cases of extreme dorkiness. The sweater-fest will wrap up on December 6.

(Via PSFK)