I am so getting one of these

iRobot has finally released its new vacuum-cleaning droid — the Roomba. I could not imagine a finer addition to my home. Dig: Not only does it clean your room, but it cleans it using an algorithm originally developed to sweep minefields.

That is possibly the most demented “technology transfer” from the military I’ve ever heard of in my life. I can just imagine the gorgeous Republican logic the Roomba could provoke. “Hell, men, we need to pay for secret black-ops counterinsurgency forces in North Korea, so that they’ll lay tons of mines all over the place, so that we’ll have to develop minesweeping technology for humanitarian reasons, so that we can have eventually port it over to vacuuming robots.”

Heh. Whatever. I am just totally going to get one of these things. I mean, I’ve owned a very nice regular Hoover since 1998, and how many times have I vacuumed my apartment? Like, maybe seven times? So the idea of a little robot scurrying around doing my vacuuming and freaking the shit out of my cats is perfect.

I love living in the future.

(This piece comes courtesy of Plastic, where there is a nice little discussion going on about it as we speak. “Not only does it clean carpets, but it can also beat your ass at chess.”)

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I'm Clive Thompson, the author of Smarter Than You Think: How Technology is Changing Our Minds for the Better (Penguin Press). You can order the book now at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Powells, Indiebound, or through your local bookstore! I'm also a contributing writer for the New York Times Magazine and a columnist for Wired magazine. Email is here or ping me via the antiquated form of AOL IM (pomeranian99).

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