A Note From The Creator: "A short history of the Halbot"

By Suzy Hopkins
Inventor of the Halbot

Not to brag, but I really feel like the mother of the Halbot.

She was mostly my idea. My co-creator was part of the deal, but when it comes right down to it I think I get most of the credit.

I drew up plans and schematics during my lunch break a couple afternoons in a row, and spent more than a few cocktail hours imagining the actions she would be able to undertake given our limited budget, rudimentary supplies and limited knowledge of Halbotics.

I went to the library a couple of times. True, I had some overdue books, but still, I went.

Part of the brilliance of her design was that she was streamlined, built for limited purposes. Not stuffed with useless parts and levered-joints and components that would only rust and decay and require replacement – if they could even be found. Let’s just say that the shelves on the black market aren’t stocked quite as reliably as Walmart’s.

Some of my friend’s bots were doing crazy stuff from the moment the factory pumped them out, screeching bundles of frayed and wayward wires and rods, nodes and nodules. But Hallie was a dream newbot. Long thin grippers, art-deco frame, built-in beret holder (I was pretty proud of that idea).

Her little midbot storage cabinet was stocked with to art supplies from almost the moment she was completed, and early on it was clear that her central computer had been properly calibrated for so-called “creative” design.

The beauty of botness is that this type of preprogramming can appear so …shall I say … unplanned.

All the effort toward streamlining worked, too. It meant that we couldn’t expect some of the work out of her that other botfams got. Like housecleaning. Don’t expect an artbot to pick stuff up off the floor. They’re not designed for it, in fact don’t have the specific joint flexors that would allow that type of maneuverability.

Quite simply, the Halbot is designed for long-term, reliable production of seemingly random and wildly creative (if they only knew!) production. The genius behind it: It’s a factory piece, but seems so real-life-artist in almost every respect. The colorful clothes, the hunched intensity, programmed mood swings based on actual histories of the Parisian masters of old.

Pretty clever, right? Not to brag, really … but I think so too.

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