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I tend to be notoriously hesitant when it comes to crowdfunding efforts*, but once in awhile something hits my radar that I'll share here on the site. Tertill: The Solar-Powered Weeding Robot for Home Gardens is just such a project, and it's one that sorta breaks two of my barriers - crowdfunding and home robotics. I have no interest in owning a Roomba to vacuum for me, and when it comes to lawn-mowing robots, that's just terrifying (they look like Battlebots, so I figure they'll attack children) and of no interest since I love mowing my lawn. One thing I don't like? Weeding our gardens. In our raised beds here at Rock Father HQ, we have a major weed problem, and the girls and I can't keep it under control. It's a huge pain, and that's where a little guy like Tertill can come in. Check this out, and watch the pitch video below.

Published in Gardening

Dress-up play is an important part of childhood, and since the first big sci-fi era of the 1950s, dressing up as a robot has been a pretty common desire. From the homemade cardboard box suits to elaborate costumes, kids love robotic entertainment, but now - as STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) continues to take hold as important focus to merge play with learning, the folks at Illinois-based Aeromax Toys have added some new items to their fantastic collection of My First Career Gear with their Robotic Engineer shirt and helmet. Sent for review in the Toy Testing Facility at Rock Father HQ™,  this dress-up set pairs the Robotic Engineer shirt (with hook-and-loop velcro on the front) with a Robot Helmet (sold separately). It's simple and fun.

With Disney•Pixar's FINDING DORY making its way into theaters, the folks at Zuru Toys have a full assortment of fun items from the long-awaited FINDING NEMO sequel swimming into toy stores and toy departments. Among the ones that will be at the top of many kids' wish lists this summer are the FINDING DORY Robo Fish - robotic fish with lifelike action, just as the name implies. Having already been familiar with some of Zuru's aquatic offerings over the years, we were excited when a trio of Robo Fish - Swimming Nemo, Swimming Marlin, and of course, Swimming Dory - arrived at Rock Father HQ for review in our State-of-the-Art Toy Testing Facility™ (in this case, our bathtub) by yours truly, and The Rock Daughters™. With something this unique, words only go so far, so we made a little video... taking the camera underwater to show you these things up-close and in-action! Take a look...

It was 20 years ago that actor Sam Waterston (LAW & ORDER) appeared on Saturday Night Live to endorse Old Glory Insurance and their excellent coverage against robot attacks on seniors. Sure, "Robot Insurance" was just a pipedream a mere two decades ago, but this week news came down that one of my favorite companies - and one that I work with on a weekly basis - has just unveiled a line of "Companion Pets" geared toward seniors... or in more simple terms, ROBOT CATS. Hasbro's JOY FOR ALL Companion Pets are their first foray into products aimed specifically at the truly oldest older kids, utilizing the animatronic technology that Hasbro has honed with products like their FurReal Friends and Furby lines.  These cats "respond to petting, hugging and motion through built-in sensors," and boast "authentic cat sound effects, and soft fur inspired by real felines." Watch the video below to see it in action...

Published in James' Journal

It's an odd synergy that Tesla Motors decided to release the video that they did today - on the eve of the release of FEAR FACTORY's GENEXUS (out 8/7 via Nuclear Blast Entertainment). For over two decades, Burton C. Bell and Dino Cazares have been bringing us tales of robotic uprising that often makes THE TERMINATOR look tame, and today comes this - a Tesla "Charger Prototype Finding its Way to Model S." Watch the video below, and then we'll discuss this a bit more...

Published in Rock Father Rides

On June 5, there's some Robots coming to the big-screen... specifically, the REALLY big screens. National Geographic Studios' ROBOTS 3D will premiere in Giant Screen, IMAX, and Digital 3D cinemas around the Globe, giving audiences an inside look at how hard it is to mimic what we humans can do as well as what it means to be a humanoid. One of the coolest parts? It's narrated by RoboThespian - an android that sounds an awful lot like actor Simon Pegg or SHAUN OF THE DEAD, HOT FUZZ and STAR TREK fame.

Published in Movies, TV and More
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