in the '70s, this spindle and
pipe cleaner contraption was popping up at trade fairs, supermarkets,
chat shows, and shopping malls all over the place. Okay, so
what? Spokesbots are fairly common today. True, but the
man who owned Quasar claimed with a perfectly straight face that
Quasar was the real deal; a fully programmable robot capable of
carrying out an array of chores in the home. More than that, he
claimed that Quasar was ready to go into full production and would
soon be available to consumers at very reasonable prices.
Too good to be true?
Of course it was. It wasn't long before roboticists became very
suspicious about the extravagant claims being made about Quasar.
Furthermore, witnesses at the robot's public appearances reported a
man nearby with what looked very much like a radio remote control.
Not surprisingly, it wasn't long before Quasar was unmasked as another
robot parlour trick and Quasar's inventor quickly and quietly