hitchBOT, hitchhiking robot, nearing final destination of Victoria
hitchBOT, the hitchhiking robot, has landed in British Columbia and is nearing its final destination of Victoria, B.C. (Twitter / @RoyHowellJR)
Published Monday, August 11, 2014 6:57PM EDT
The friendly, social-media savvy robot named hitchBOT has hitchhiked to British Columbia and is zeroing in on its final destination of Victoria.
The robot re-tweeted this photo over the weekend, which was taken on the Alberta-B.C. border.
The robot later posted this photo to its Instagram account, boasting about the "amazing" west-coast view.
hitchBOT first embarked on its cross-country journey on July 27, when its inventors dropped the robot off at the side of the highway in Halifax. It wasn't long before the smiling bot thumbed its first ride.
Since that first day, the robot has met many other generous Canadians and seen some great sights. And like anyone else on a road trip, hitchBOT hasn't been shy sharing photos of its trip so far.
From attending a powwow on Ontario's Manitoulin Island to crashing a wedding in Golden, B.C., here's a look at what hitchBOT has been up to and a few of the people he's met over the two weeks.
Thanks Sharon and David for letting me ride in your trailer and for showing me Blue Heron campground in Charlo, NB. pic.twitter.com/MiV43n7w9J— Hitchbot (@Hitchbot) July 30, 2014
McMaster University's David Smith and Ryerson University's Frauke Zeller said they designed the robot as an experiment to see how far it could go on the charity of passersby.
Zeller said the team wanted to flip the question "Can we trust robots?" and ask "Can robots trust human beings?"
"Our society depends more and more on robots and we need to know more about our relationship to that kind of technology," she told The Canadian Press in July.
The robot can't move by itself, with the exception of its hitchhiking arm and finger, and is therefore dependent on the goodwill of people, Zeller told CTV News Channel in July.
Smith said hitchBOT will challenge society's views on strangers and safety at a time when hitchhiking is viewed negatively despite falling crime rates.
With files from The Canadian Press