Imagine an Alexa-powered robot that roams around your house, cleaning your rugs and washing the dishes. That's the dream, right?
Well, we're hoping Amazon and the other big tech giants are inventing this sort of tech, and while we wait, we're looking for clues to support that pipe dream. The latest evidence comes from Amazon’s Rohit Prasad, a lead scientist and key member of the Alexa division, who recently admitted Amazon's assistant would be more useful with a robot body and cameras.
Prasad, talking at MIT Technology Review’s EmTech Digital AI conference in San Francisco, said, “The only way to make smart assistants really smart is to give it eyes and let it explore the world". The thing is, some Alexa smart devices already have cameras, though they are lacking the ability to explore the world. So, it seems like Prasad is suggesting Alexa should get a body.
He wouldn’t confirm that, but Technology Review ran with it, proclaiming Alexa needs a robot body to escape the confines of today’s AI. Couple this with past reporting from Bloomberg, which claimed Amazon is reportedly developing a home robot, and we can't help but think about The Jetsons' Rosey robot, which could roam around a house and perform a variety of chores.
Bloomberg, which described Amazon's yet-to-be-announced effort as "top-secret", once claimed Amazon's secretive robot project has an internal codename, called Vesta (from the Roman goddess of the hearth). It's supposedly being developed by Lab126, Amazon's hardware R&D center.
Add it all up, and comments from Amazon’s Prasad line up with these past rumours. And it's seriously got us excited about the future.