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Dog robot tunes in to human feelings

It's the one with the waggly tail

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Children's toymaker Tomy is to launch a dog robot that can adapt its personality to its owner.

Dog.com will bark and go walkies like any real canine, and via seven sensors on its body will be able to show emotions or feelings. The cyberpet will be able to talk in its own special dog robot language and even learn a spot of Japanese.

Meanwhile, it will develop one of 16 personalities depending on how its master or mistress treats it. This could be anything from "good boy" to "bad boy", "oddly-old natured", "pragmatist" or "Lord Muck".

The 21cm tall robot will also be able to annoy its owner and other dogs with 795 types of sounds and voices - including barks, electronic sounds, music and Japanese words and phrases recorded by actors.

Dog.com, which is a more sophisticated version of "human dog" - a model showcased at the Tokyo Toy Show in March - will go on sale on November 30. It is aimed mostly at women and will cost 14,800 yen (£96). ®

Dog.com specifications:

Size: 140mm wide x 210mm high x 300mm deep (including its tail)
Weight: 1kg (including battery)
Battery: dedicated NiCad battery
Time in motion: one hour
CPU: 8-bit chip
Memory: 16KB

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