I've always been more than a little wary of humanoid robots, probably because of Saturn 3 and Hector's penchant for wearing people's faces.
Of course, SAMI is unlikely to flip out anytime soon, but he still is a bit creepy.
Interestingly enough, SAMI was designed using motion sensing technology from PrimeSense - the very same company that created the original 3D motion sensors in Microsoft's popular Kinect platform.
SAMI can best be described as a life-sized, semi-humanoid robot prototype (initially) targeted at industries like healthcare and manufacturing. However, PrimeSense believes SAMI might eventually be capable of crossing over to entertainment, as well as intelligent transport. Indeed, the robot boasts two integrated sensors: one located on the torso to detect people and another on the mobile base which is used for navigation and obstacle avoidance.
"Robots will be practically everywhere in the near future: assisting the elderly, in home care, as personal and security service providers, and they will circulate within a networked environment of communicating devices in the home and work place," explained PrimeSense VP Ohad Shvuel.
"Primesense technology is positioned to help the robotics industry expedite the pursuit of practical, affordable robotic solutions and create a healthy robotics ecosystem for robotic entrepreneurs, innovators, designers, and application developers. Our sensors enable the robots to see the users and the environment around them."