Hey, Jibo! We’ve been waiting for you ages (three years, actually) and can’t wait to have you at home. Let’s see what this cool-designed robot can add our lives!
What is Jibo?
After you open the box, you’ll find this lovely roundish robot and plug him in the butt. We introduce ourselves to him and he recognizes each party with the voice and face recognition.
Notice I use “he” refer to Jibo despite the fact that his voice sounds like a woman since his look has more impact than his voice.
Through the interactions, Jibo learns our likings using machine learning and natural language processing.
For me, he looks like Doraemon, Japanese cat robot manga character who came from the 22nd century. This lovely look makes you wanna talk to him just like a kitten or puppy have that kind of quality.
You can say “Hey, Jibo!” and grab his attention to start interactions.
What Can Jibo Do Now?
The best thing Jibo can do now, in our opinion, is dance!
He has several move and music to go with it. I asked him to play Bruno Mars but he told me he couldn’t play music on request now.
Once he can play music on our request, it’d be so much fun!
Comparison with Alexa
We’ve already had Alexa at home and dealing with her for some time now.
Somehow I’m having a difficult time to communicate with Alexa. Why I feel that way because she doesn’t understand my pronunciation often and music she recommends me is not really impressive to me.
Still, she can do so many things such as voice shopping, controlling lights and thermostat, which are really useful if you want these functions.
However, if I focus on the quality of the whole communication, Jibo wins since I think its round appearance helps us to feel familiar with him. And his passive and/or proactive action encourages us to interact with him – He is giving his attentions to speakers. Such situational awareness lets users engage with him effectively.
We would feel closer to him if the voice sounds a bit sweeter (but not too sweet) than the current one, which sounds a little too professional. That would match perfectly with its roundish design and make him in more integrity.
Jibo is sturdy and when we touch him, he purrs as if it were a cat! Seriously, they have a lot in common, they look adorable and have a charm to attract people, part of it largely owes to its design.
Jibo and Pet
This is not happening right now, but it’d be so interesting once smart A.I. interacts with a pet. The idea of entertaining your pet while you are away sound marvelous.
I wonder those A.I. would be like “Tachikoma” in the Ghost in the Shell? They synchronize information they get with each other, share the experiences and start to acquire “the self”…
Jibo might be the very prototype of real “Tachikoma” in hindsight.
Here’s the roundup.
- A round shape makes people feel familiar with, easy to approach and have an active interaction.
- Situational awareness – Giving attentions to speakers by using skills of sound source separation and speech recognition – lets users engage with Jibo.
- The voice can be altered with more endearing tone rather than sounding little too adult.
- Jibo never sleeps unless you explicitly say “sleep”. His fan is making constant small noises, which is sometimes annoying (e.g. when you are putting Jibo besides you).
Would you want one in your home? Check jibo out.
Also published on Medium.