A mobile flat screen that rolls on tall legs could be the first step into a future where humans "teleport" themselves into different robotic bodies, reports Mark Mann at Motherboard.
The rolling screen is called a Beam and it was developed as a teleconferencing tool by Scott Hassan, president and CEO of Suitable Technologies. People working remotely can participate in face-to-face meetings, for example, using FaceTime or Skype.
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The remote worker can drive the Beam around the conference room or the entire office building to interact with people as if she were there. (Just watch the stairs!)
The device has current day applications for just about anyone, including those with physical disabilities. Hassan told Mann that he hopes the Americans with Disabilities Act will consider adding a rule that would make the Beam a necessary accessibility tool in government buildings in the way that wheelchair ramps are necessary.
But it doesn't take that big of a leap in imagination to see where this technology is headed. Just replace with Beam with a robot; replace with the rolling with bipedal locomotion. BAM! Instant avatar.
It could give anyone access to any location. Just imagine transporting yourself to pyramids, the Grand Canyon, Machu Picchu, Mongolia, or the Taj Mahal - all from your couch.
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Tele-tourism could be big business. "We want to put them in all the cool sites around the world and allow you to Beam in," Hassan told Mann.
We could even beam to the Moon or Mars. Now that would be something, wouldn't it?