Robot half-elf Uff-E
Author Valco Laboratoriot
Ever since I read the first Asimov (I haven't actually read it), I've dreamed of a tireless robot slave that would satisfy all my needs and clean up afterwards. My other needs are still unmet, but I've been living with various robot vacuum cleaners for six months now, so perhaps I could write a blog on the subject.
Let this help people decide if they want a robot vacuum cleaner for themselves (from us).
What robot vacuum cleaner?
The robotic vacuum cleaner is a space-age invention that sucks tirelessly and contributes to reducing human dependence on spouse's cleaning desires. So it's a robot that is also a vacuum cleaner.
Using highly intelligent (not really) artificial intelligence algorithms, the robot pads around the apartment on its own, sucking up dust and debris along the way, before returning to its dock to recharge. The few better robots (e.g. Uff-E) do use some obscure logic to map the apartment and try to clean it as evenly as possible.
At Valco, we have now tested a total of six robotic vacuum cleaners. Three of them were so bad that they were given away for free to friends. They got stuck everywhere, sucked lazily and went around completely randomly. The other three were more decent and were given names, because it's good to have a name for a life partner. So there are quite significant differences between the suckers, even though they were all in roughly the same price range.
Mäll-E and Black Avenger
From the first batch, we tested the Black Avenger and the Mäll-E, which on paper had pretty similar characteristics. Mäll-E was a bit more sophisticated and perhaps more intelligent for my taste. We were about to order the Mäll-E model for sale, but mine broke and we found out that the manufacturer was really sniffy about any warranty issues. The Mäll-E, however, was later repaired with the help of a chisel and a hammer, among other things, and passed on to a friend. However, we were happy to let it go, because we would soon go bankrupt if we sold them to our own customers with a Valco guarantee.
Mäll-e (left) and Black Avenger. Both had a similar base.
Next up for us was a black vacuum cleaner called the Uff-E, and a sister model that's a couple of tens of pounds cheaper and probably developmentally disabled. The Uff-E's sister found the final destination at a neighbour's house which is not so accurate.
This model is a little nicer than the others, connectable via Wifi to the internet and controllable with a handy app even from work. If you don't have Wifi or can't connect it because you're stupid, you can also control the robot vacuum cleaner the old-fashioned way with a remote control or foolproof by pressing the single button on top of the vacuum cleaner.
The Uff-E can either be timed or commanded via an app, and it can also be used for remote control even when blind drunk. The remote control is good for teasing pets or your spouse, for example, if you're just looking for a picture of your home with some Axl Smith tuning. Through the app, you can admire the "map" stored by the robot, which represents the so-called cleaned area.
So unlike other models, the Uff-E doesn't just go around randomly, but tries to use some fuzzy Chinese logic to make a clean sweep. It doesn't always seem to make sense, but mysteriously the dust container always fills up sooner or later and the apartment is clean enough.
Uff-E robot vacuum cleaner sales kit with shield. It comes with a couple of spare brushes, a charger, a water tank, a rag and a cleaning tool.
The Uff-E speaks English with a Chinese accent, which is perhaps the most annoying aspect of it. Although it only makes a noise when it acknowledges commands. We asked China if they could make a model that spoke Finnish like this Savoese forestry worker. It could be done, but it costs so much that some kind of crowdfunding campaign has to be set up. We promise that if you order 1000 vacuum cleaners, we will record the sounds from the video above..
Life with a robot vacuum cleaner
The owner of two dogs and a mustard machine, who inherited Black Avenger, said the robotic vacuum doesn't completely replace cleaning, but it cuts the vacuuming time in half. I myself hardly ever vacuumed before and with the robot I never vacuum again, but I have no pets other than my neighbour Jouni.
There are lots of pictures on the internet of how a robot vacuum cleaner and a dog pooping inside get on well together.
The vacuum cleaner also has a water tank and a rag, but as a bachelor I couldn't really find a use for it. It's more like a snail, which leaves a wet trail all over the house. Perhaps someone with a better understanding of cleaning will see the added value.
Long female or hippy hair gets caught in the brush attached to the suction nozzle of the device and requires cleaning from time to time. A special tool is supplied to keep the brush in good condition. The robot vacuum cleaner is not maintenance-free per se, but requires regular cleaning and emptying of the dust tank (surprisingly).
Self-destructive robots also like to hang themselves from wires, which is why it's important to make sure there are no major suicidal tendencies in the home. In a musician's practice room, these are unlikely to fare too well with guitar dust on the floor like noodles in a techie's vomit.
At least the Uff-E will survive on normal mats and on the other hand a thick enough mat will act as a barrier that the robot will dodge. If the carpet is just the wrong kind of medium-thick hair carpet, the robot can get nastily caught in it.
All in all, a robot vacuum cleaner is a surprisingly good pet, or we wouldn't be selling them. It's interesting to watch and sometimes fun to tease. If you own two robot suckers, you can make them fight to the death. It's not the most ingenious or important invention in the world, but it's certainly worth the money and a good addition to the modern home.