My Second ‘Mother’

By Barbara Neussner

Mother is a little robot that bears a resemblance to those little Russian Babushka dolls we all know. It is created by, a company founded by Rafi Haladjian and Franck Biehler.
As a mother does,
Mother watches over her children, which are represented by so-called Motion Cookies. You can affix them to almost anything. Mother can be assigned to ‘motherly’ tasks such as monitoring your tooth brushing behavior or water intake, if you place a Motion Cookie on a tooth brush or water jug, but it can also surveil your home and raise alarm if it detects movement next to the Motion Cookie.

It may not be able to clean or cook for you (not yet), but there are endless possibilities how Mother can reduce the number of things you have to worry about.

  • Is the temperature in the baby’s room too hot or too cold? Ask Mother!
  • Is your daughter home from school? Ask Mother!
  • Did grandmother take her medicine? Ask Mother!
  • How many steps did you walk today? You guessed it, Mother counted them for you!

Aside from Motion Cookies and Mother there are many different applications you can use to visualize the data gathered by Mother and her cookies. The main page of those apps is called Senseboard and it shows you a quick summary of all the important things going on.
Senseboard is accessible from your smartphone, tablet or computer, and it can even notify you via email if it detects suspicious activity or you wanted to be alarmed if a certain condition is met by a Motion Cookie.

Maybe one day Mother will be able to move on omnidirectional wheels or walk on feet and analyze emotions, as Pepper, a humanoid robot from Aldebaran, does. Then you would have a nanny for your children in stressful times, which may even be able to help them with their homework by consulting the omniscient internet.
Or there could be a version of Mother for hospitals and retirement homes with hundreds of Motion Cookies assigned to it to oversee patients’ and elderly people’s medicine intake.

The possibilities are endless.

Barbara Neussner

Student at Technikum Wien University

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