Monday, March 21, 2011


While the robot takeover seems like it's getting closer every day, take comfort in the fact that ASIMO from Honda is really just here to help. And dance.

During a visit to Disneyland last weekend, I had the rare experience of seeing something new - at least to me. I've done just about everything there is to do at the resort over the past ten years, so it gives me great pleasure when I get to fill in some gaps.

Why hadn't I seen the ASIMO presentation in Tomorrowland, there since 2005? I can answer that question with one word: Innoventions. Any Disneyland enthusiast will tell you that Innoventions is worthless at best, and a catastrophic failure of a replacement for Walt Disney's Carousel of Progress at worst. Most regular guests will just tell you it's boring.

ASIMO has been at the Happiest Place on Earth for nearly 6 years though, entertaining those daring enough to enter the Revolving Building of Boredom and find their way to his theater. During 15-minute presentations throughout the day, you'll see magic at work - only this time, it's real.

So what the heck is ASIMO? Simply put, he's a robot. His name is an acronym, which stands for Advanced Step in Innovative Mobility. Designed and engineered by Honda, ASIMO was created with a relatively basic purpose: to help human beings. Standing at about 4-feet tall, this little guy is proof that technological marvels can come in small packages.

While you can take a more in-depth look at his many capabilities on the ASIMO website, it was the seemingly simple functions I witnessed that had me in awe. He talks, he has camera eyes, he can go up and down stairs (way cooler than it sounds), he can play soccer and can even run. But the best part? ASIMO can dance.

That's right, people! ASIMO can DANCE! The party lights came up, the music started, and this little robot got down. Like most of the experience, you really have to see ASIMO to believe it. But for now just trust me that it's really, really impressive. I wanna take him to the club with me!

So the next time you're at Disneyland, make sure you pop in to Innoventions and see the show. 'Cause it's not a cast member in a suit or an audio-animatronic figure - ASIMO is 100% robotics in action.

And while I hope to have one around the house in my lifetime, I've also seen
Battlestar Galactica. I know how it could end, so I'll be treating ASIMO with nothing but love and respect!

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