"There were more than 200 booths at Linux World Conference and
Expo. Some big, some small, some with grass huts, stuffed animals,
yo-yos, life-size mascots, breasts, comedians, presenters in
penguin suits (of both the arctic and the couture kind), all trying
to lure the Linux-loving crowd into their booths to listen. I even
saw a guy with a guitar, but this was the first time I have ever
seen the booth bots."
"SGI hired Dulles, Va.,-based Viva Robotics to, as they say
in the trade show industry, "work their booth." Red, so named that
day for the red SGI shirt buttoned over his metal bodice, and
Sprockit-T-Robot, are two rabble-rousing robots that interact with
each other as well as the crowd that came by to see these strange
and silly silicon machines. Like Dez and Lucy, Red and
Sprockit, oscilated between affection and disdain, cajoling and
harassing each other in turn."
"I watched four women approach them slowly, settling in a
slightly bowed huddle, cautious but curious. All four are small and
the tallest wore a scarf over her head in Muslim-like fashion. I
stood 25 yards away next to 35-year-old Mark Moody. He wears a
headset and a fanny pack that holds the cellular equipment he uses
to bring Sprockit-T (the "T" is for "the") to life. Sprockit
banters with the women for a little, responding to questions that
Moody hears over the headset. Every time Sprockit talked, the red
neon band that represents his mouth flickered in succession with
the neon blue circles that stand for his eyes. The women were shy
so Moody took things up a notch."
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