ThinkGeek has produced a handcrafted replica of HAL 9000, the (fictional) homicidal robot from 2001: A Space Odyssey. Is this a must-have gadget?
Following on from Iris 9000, its Siri Voice Control module with a glowing red eye reminiscent of HAL, ThinkGeek has gone the extra mile to produce the "movie-accurate" HAL 9000 Life-Size Replica.
It would be more accurate to call it a HAL 9000 sensor replica but who would want a huge mainframe - having a wall mounted HAL with a red LED eye seems much more attractive.
This new gadget has a price tag of $499.99 so what can you expect?
It is based on the 1967 blueprints and studio files from the 1968 movie 2001: A Space Odyssey and is machined in 6061 aircraft-grade aluminum with the black components being anodized. It has a custom-ground glass lens with red LED eye and a sticker is included to make this lens have the Nikkor wording as seen in some close-ups.
In terms of functionality HAL 9000 not only talks, producing one of 15 movie quotes at random, it also responds to your voice - say something to HAL longer than 1.2 seconds to activate a sound clip.
Alternatively you can point almost any IR remote at him and press a button for a sound clip.
Which sound clips?
Here are two examples:
"I'm sorry, Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that. I think you know what the problem is just as well as I do. This mission is too important for me to allow you to jeopardize it."
"You're going to find that rather difficult without your space helmet, Dave."
And of course it sings the Daisy, Daisy song.
See the video to get a clearer idea of this highly-prized gadget:
My only remaining problem is working out a justification for buying one for the office.
Given the controversy surrounding chatbots and the Turing Test, it would seem unwise for neural networks to challenge the same problem. As you might guess, they have and the result is the predictable [ ... ]
Microsoft has been making some amazing progress on the Windows 10 front, although not enough to make a July launch seem sensible. On the other hand, the Windows 10 SDK has been previewed and then noth [ ... ]