HOSPI

Matsushita Electric Works has come up with a robot that ships patient records, x-rays, medicine and so forth around hospitals in its password-protected innards. The HOSPI contains a PHS (a Japanese short-range digital cellphone technology) unit and so can be tracked on its progress and pinged if you need a pickup; it also uses the PHS transmitter to have the hospital elevators take it to whatever floor it's headed to. Since elevators these days are fairly smart, sounds like the makings of a class struggle right there. The HOSPI moves at about a metre per second, and runs for seven hours on an eight-hour charge assuming it's moving half the time, which almost proves our contention that everything has more battery life than an iPod these days.

Fujitsu-Siemens' 64-bit Amilo A1630 laptop