father's day, kids, life

Robotic Anki Drive race cars powered by artificial intelligence (AI)

My new favourite Futuristic Toy! Launching this Wednesday at Apple Stores in the UK, the Anki Drive racing game was created in 2010 by Carnegie Mellon Robotics Institute graduates and robotics experts using the same criterion as Google’s self-driving cars.Anki Drive robotic race cars

The cars and the race mat (and the packaging for that matter) are beautifully designed. Pictured here is the yellow ‘KOURAI’ who has his own personality type, and as one of my friends pointed out on Instagram tonight, has a look of the Batmobile about him… Probably due to Boris Sofman, Anki’s CEO’s astute involvement of none other than Batmobile and Iron Man‘s facemask designer, Harald Belker.

So, grab your iPhone, iPad or iPad mini and pick a car! The player can race others cars that control themselves (AI) which spookily respond and adapt to the real player. As you get started racing (either solo with the AI or with friends) the cars’ technology realises where they are on the mat, and navigate the course (without falling off the track, which I do recall with some painful memories of the scalextric slot cars we had constantly falling off the track).

My boys love playing Mario Kart on the Wii… so I can’t wait to get racing with the Anki Drive with them – driving these funky miniature, AI robotic cars with bonkers personalities and upgradable armoury! (and even better, when you’re finished playing, you just roll the racing mat up and store it in its box!)

So watch this space for a review from the boys… I’ve had a great morning playing with these Anki Drive race cars, and I know what Mr. KidsChaos is getting for Father’s Day!

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