Nao robot brushes cat via Microsoft Kinect. [VIDEO]

Patient Cat Endures Brushing by Kinect-Controlled Robot

Patient Cat Endures Brushing by Kinect-Controlled Robot

Future Tense
The Citizen's Guide to the Future
Jan. 4 2012 3:05 PM

Patient Cat Endures Brushing by Kinect-Controlled Robot

This was too good to wait till Future Tense’s weekly Friday robot video roundup. Roboticist Taylor Veltrop uses a treadmill, a hacked Microsoft Kinect, Wii remotes, and head-mounted display to direct a Nao robot in brushing his cat. Only a cat owned by a roboticist would be so comfortable with a machine marching around (though cats have displayed marked tolerance for Roombas). According to Veltrop, he has spent a year working on this rather Rube Goldberg-ian project.

Highlight: Before wrapping up, Veltrop asks his wife, who is keeping the cat calm: “Did I just punch him in the head? Sorry, kitty.”

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Torie Bosch is the editor of Future Tense, a project of Slate, New America, and Arizona State that looks at the implications of new technologies.