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This Robot Cord Makes the Digital Real

The problem with digital assistants, Microsoft Word’s Clippy included, is that they can’t really do that much. Sure, they can offer you tips on copying-and-pasting and saving your work often. But they remain on the screen. MIT Media Lab’s new LineFORM robot makes that all better. The linear device can be a phone, a touch pad, and even a stencil. Your desk won’t need anything else. 

The GIFs that the new media technology Tumblr Prosthetic Knowledge gathers are cartoonishly anthropomorphized. The snake robot flips into a phone handset; loops around your wrist and taps you when it has a message like an animalistic Apple Watch; and it wiggles when plugged into a laptop with data flowing through it! There’s a theoretical explanation about “the dynamism of animated curves,” but it mostly looks like the Pixar lamp came to life. 

It’s a physical companion to the very virtual space of our computers. I bet it can even curl into the shape of a paper clip, if you really want.