You may have recently seen telepresence
robots played for laughs
on The Big Bang Theory
, but they do also have quite a few practical purposes, and high school student Lyndon Baty from Knox City, Texas is now using one to particularly great effect. He has a weakened immune system that prevents him from actually attending school, so he's using a remotely-controlled Vgo telepresence "robot" that allows him to move from class to class and interact with teachers and other students using nothing more than his laptop and webcam at home. The bot itself is four-feet tall, self-balancing, and simply packs a basic video conferencing system up top that allows its operator to interact with their surroundings -- at $5,000, it's also considerably cheaper than some other similar options
. As Popular Science
notes, however, this isn't the first time that a telepresence bot has gone to school -- a student in Russia suffering from leukemia has also been using a similar bot since September of last year as part of a pilot project from the robot's designers. Head on past the break for the local news report from Texas.