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When you can't get it all done: QB, The Office Robot | Cypress Semiconductor

When you can't get it all done: QB, The Office Robot

Question: What's the difference between having a job in a weak economy (2008-2010) and a growing economy like now?

Answer: When you have more to do than time to do it AND the economy is bad, you are just happy to still have your job.

Things in the market have improved and in the touchscreen market it is continuing to explode - thanks to the smartphone revolution ignited in 2007 by Apple and the iPhone. And if you are part of this or any other current revolution, you know the feeling when times are booming and the work piles up faster than you can complete it. Like a "whac-a-mole" game where the moles haven't read the rules; they get bigger each time you knock 'em down and they bring their friends. If this sounds familiar you will be happy to hear about the coming invasion of office robots to help you out. Take a look at what/who you may be facing at your next meeting.

QB, the office avatar

You can read more in this recent story by Charles J. Murray in Design News:
http://www.designnews.com/article/512661-The_Dawning_of_the_Office_Robot.php

"The robot, specifically known as the QB and built by Anybots Inc., has that kind of effect on people. Looking like a cross between a Segway and an ET doll" - just what you were hoping to meet at the water cooler, in the hallway or across from you at the next meeting.

The designers vision is "to have the robot serve as an "avatar" - a replacement for a person who can't attend a meeting." The inventor Michael Clark of Anybots Inc., got this idea after producing a heavy-duty robot meant to help out with heavy lifting and finding them roaming his offices popping in on colleagues, aiding in person-to-person communication. According to Clark: "Everybody has meetings and every meeting has a break where people go out in the hall and drink coffee and talk. Speaker phones don't move, but an avatar robot [like QB] can. It can go out in the hall and allow you to talk to people. It does everything except drink coffee." And who wouldn't want to share their secrets with ET's better balancing mechanical cousin.

Take a look at QB in action:

 

Perhaps the best feature is that although the QB is short (also like ET) it's head can be raised on his extended neck (like ET?). So the "driver" can corner a colleague in his or her office, approach them silently, blocking the exit and then loom over them until they agree to whatever it is the "driver" is trying to get across. That is, of course, unless the colleague has replaced himself with a QB in his cube, while off at a meeting, perhaps somewhere like Hawaii. 

Perhaps version 2.0 will even allow battling.

Jon Pearson
Methods and Madness, Feb 27, 2011
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