Engineer-inventor Douglas Hines, right, poses with his company's "True Companion" sex robot, Roxxxy. (Getty Images)
In an age where relationships are more complicated than ever - Internet dating, video game character marriage, same-sex marriage, high school - it's refreshing to see technology continue to take a romantic lead.
Meet Roxxxy, the $7,000 robot of love. But she's not just some plastic blowup doll, oh no. Roxxxy is, according to her manufacturers (pimps?) a five-foot, seven-inch, 120 pound companion that comes with five "personalities", is "ready for action."
She's fully customizable in terms of, err, physical attributes - including skin color, hair and mos of the other bits you'd think to mold. And, this may or may not be a turn-on, she's conversational. Roxxxy can kick back and chat about the Bears game if you're so inclined, but won't bug you about paying the bills or cleaning the gutters.
"She can't vacuum, she can't cook but she can do almost anything else if you know what I mean," Douglas Hine, her New Jersey-based artificial intelligence engineer and creator said.
"She's a companion. 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."
Hines, who must have some really interesting research habits and lab practices, promises the lifelike creation from TrueCompanion (Actual marketing slogan: "The World's First Sex Robot - She's Ready to Talk or Play") is able to "know exactly what you are like" thanks to a wireless Internet connection. She can study your habits and interests and even send you e-mails through the day in what surely must be the most interesting messages your IT department will spy on in their life.
"Sex only goes so far, then you want to be able to talk to the person," he told the Daily Telegraph.
If you can look past the absolute creepiness for just a moment, the technology and robotics are pretty impressive. Hines says she has an operating spine that allows for "realistic" movement - though not arms and legs, apparently - and a mechanical heart with a liquid cooling system.
OK, but back to the creepy. There's also the promise of partner swapping "without risk of emotional damage" and the ability to store personalities for various scenarios. In fact, the inspiration for this stroke of genius supposedly came out of the Sept. 11 attacks. Apparently a friend of Hines' was killed and he wanted to figure out a way to store the personality forever. How you make the leap from lasting storage and tribute to a fallen friend to sex toy is surely an interesting story filled with the right mixture of pathos and freakiness, but he doesn't get into the creation process.
Roxxxy was announced at the AVN Adult Entertainment Expo - in Las Vegas, of course. And don't worry, there are plans for a guybot - Rocky.