Communicating with A Sex Doll

Now this story on Roxxxy peaked my interest — from a communication perspective, of course.  Robotic girlfriends have been around for a long time in some form or another.  And, as in every other area, technology has improved the experience, so I have read.  But apparently the physical experience is not enough and communication is a desired feature.  Douglas Hines’ original 1993 invention Trudy, lacked personality.

According to John Murrell’s Good Morning Silicon Valley email newsletter:

“Roxxxy still can’t move without assistance, but she offers what Trudy lacked and customers apparently wanted — conversational skills. “Sex only goes so far — then you want to be able to talk to the person,” Hines said. Equipped with sensors and an attached laptop, “she’s a companion,” he said. “She has a personality. She hears you. She listens to you. She speaks. She feels your touch. She goes to sleep. We are trying to replicate a personality of a person.” ”

So I get that communication is a critical part of intimacy with another human, but I am having a hard time with the concept of communication contributing to the experience with a sex doll.  But, Hines is being responsive to customer demand, and apparently the ability to communicate is desired.  And, when you order the robot online, you fill out a survey that allows Roxxxy’s personality to be personalized to match your likes and dislikes.  The cost for this conversational doll ranges from $7-9K.

Tell Them What You’re Gonna Tell Them

Remember the saying “Tell them what you are going to tell them, tell them, and then tell them what you told them” that is a recommendation for effective communication?

Well this week, the tech industry giants seems to be doing just that. Today Google speculation about the new Nexus One phone and Apple speculation about the slate computer were all over the Internet, including this San Jose Merc article.

I am not so interested in the news as I am in the communication technique.  It is the game of garnering the attention of technology consumers.  It is the game of stealing the attention from other companies.  Just as  CES (Consumer Electronics Show) is about to kick off this week in Las Vegas, Google is swinging attention its way with a press conference the Tuesday before the show.  And, even though Apple is not making any announcements to several weeks after the show, new is ‘leaking’ about future announcements, stealing a bit of attention from Google.

The original saying was a recommendation to help audience’s remember the key message.  Well, in this case, I would say not only does it help the consumers of technology remember what is being announced, but it also works as a power play to attract their attention — away from other company’s news.