A Robot Review

Discussion in 'Community' started by Eniregnat, Apr 1, 2003.

  1. Eniregnat macrumors 68000


    Jan 22, 2003
    In your head.
    I am a Mac user. Like most Mac users I like tools that work as advertised and I like cutting edge gadgets. The Roomba vacuum cleaner robot is just that. I remember watching the auto-vac race around the Jetson's house, often tripping George and scarring Astro. That technology is here, but it isn't as fast or as modern looking.

    After 3 months of use, I give it a thumbs up. I generally don't recommend products unless I have had enough time working with them to be able to believe that the product is reliable and useful.

    The Roomba vacuum cleaner robot is a toy that has improved my life. Has it improved it some $200... for the average person I would probably say no, but for myself it is a yes.

    My life and the word "mess" go together. It isn't that I like being slovenly, it is that I just focus on projects and forget (and hate) to clean up. The Roomba forced me to clean my floors enough to let it vacuum do the rest.

    Before I head out for work each morning, I pull the cloths, books, and loose junk off the floor and place my Roomba robot in the center of one room and set it loose. When I return I have a cleaner floor and a robot with an amazingly full dust bucket. I still have to vacuum and sweep my floors once or twice a month, but the Roomba keeps up on the dust and dirt, most of it from the freeway next to my apartment.

    I get a lot of satisfaction out of the little bot. I like returning to its full bins, and wonder where all the dirt comes from. When I lift my futon frame up, there is little if any dust bunnies, as most days it manages to find its way under and then back out of my bed. (I am waiting for it to end its cleaning cycle under my bed, that will be a pain.)

    For me, the purchase forced me to keep my life more organized and my floors cleaner. I hate wasting money and I force myself to make the gadget pay for its self. My girlfriend is happier with my cleanliness and I have several envious friends who want to borrow the little bot. It's a good conversation piece, and after a party it’s a whiz at picking up all the bits of fluff, glitter, and confetti that seem to fall from guests.


    • Cleans wile your are gone.
      Works on carpet and hard floors.
      Gets most of the dirt and small stuff, including coins off of the floor, sometimes better than a normal vacuum cleaner!
      Good battery life.


    • Cost- it's hard to justify
      Roomba proofing an apartment may not be possible for apartments.
      It isn't for everyone.
      Can't be used in the kitchen or bathroom if the floor is dirty.


    • Cleaning, it isn't difficult, but there are 3 separate areas to clean.
      Cost of new filters is inline with had vacs.
      Noise, it is quieter than a vacuum cleaner, but noisier than a RC car.

    Things that I would like to change:

    • Cost, but it was worth it for me.
      Cleaning algorithm. Though it works very well, I would like to see an algorithm with a little more randomness for small rooms with lots of furniture. I would also like to see a very small room selection.
      Computer/IR interface. I would like to have my computer pick up its progress and email me with its progress or problems. I would also like a remote (It doesn’t have a handle, but how cool would it be to vacuum from your armchair.)

    Recommended for:

    • Students with little furniture
      People with lots of open space with in rooms.
      Anybody who likes to "set it and forget it".
      Very lonely people who have nothing better to do than watch a giant shuffle puck glide across a room.
  2. howard macrumors 68020


    Nov 18, 2002
    interesting, i always wondered if that thing worked. in all those future shows you see a robot that comes out to clean things, and its kinda obvious that people want that, so maybe in a few years they'll have ones that work even better.

    thanks for the review
  3. Mr. Anderson Moderator emeritus

    Mr. Anderson

    Nov 1, 2001
    Neat, but it almost sounds like an Info-mercial post :D

    Here's a pic of a Robot I use at work....

  4. Eniregnat thread starter macrumors 68000


    Jan 22, 2003
    In your head.
    Is it an x-ray robot?

    I wrote Arn before I posted to make sure it was ok. People rave about games, raman, and sites, so I thought a robot was ok.

    I hadn't noticed the infomercial tone.
    Perhaps it reads little infomercial like because I love the little bot, and oddly I am working on a short story that centers on a character that is infomercial sales person.

    Side note: Don’t expect it to look clean. After 3 months of use it is scratched and dirty.
  5. Mr. Anderson Moderator emeritus

    Mr. Anderson

    Nov 1, 2001
    its a Structural Anomaly Mapping robot that uses an acoustic source (spark gap) to create a loud, broad band news that excites the surface of an aircraft which is analyzed by an Acoustic Doppler Laser Vibrometer.

    What you end up with is a robot that can scan an airframe in 8 hours, with out human interaction, without touching the aircraft, that will see corrosion, delaminations, etc.

    Cool stuff, actually.

  6. Thanatoast macrumors 65816


    Dec 3, 2002
    Captain! The iso-matrix on the beta wave shield harmonics is interfering with ODN transfer conduit protocols! :D

    Sorry, had to throw that out there. But you're right, cool stuff. :)
  7. Eniregnat thread starter macrumors 68000


    Jan 22, 2003
    In your head.
    Very cool. How often does the spark gap have to be replaced?
    Does it ever need replaced?
  8. GeneR macrumors 6502a


    Jan 2, 2003
    The land of delusions, CA.
    Very cool.

    Both what D uses and the iRobot. Both are very, very cool. :D

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