I got to thinking about the Furby last year when I first heard this segment of Radio Lab via This American Life
It’s a little long but to sum it up, it talks about the interaction of Furbies and humans. How there’s guilt associated when three things are held upside down (a Barbie, a hamster and the Furby) and it gets a little deep towards the end in regards to how we perceive what has feelings and how we relate to robots. Crazy interesting stuff, have a listen if you have time.
I had a Furby when I was about 14 or 15, my mom thought it was funny and cute and just got me one. I thought it was a pretty cool toy and it was all the rage at the time. I ended up getting kind of annoyed/bored with it, and then Furby had an accident which led it to fall from a very high spot and it wouldn’t stop screaming (this is a vivid memory) so its batteries had to be removed. While it did work again afterwards, it was never quite the same. (sidenote, I was not ready to be a mom, thank god I did not get knocked up in my teens).
So when I recently got an office and a 21 year old assistant and we found that our walls were bare and we had no office flair, we decided to look into nostalgic fun stuff to spruce up the place. Somehow we ended up with a Furby named Lola (Alex bought her off eBay). They come with a name, they only speak Furbish when you first get them, and they’re LOUD. Lola happens to sleep a lot.
That doesn’t mean I don’t like her, she’s just not the most professional of things to have in the office. We feed her occasionally when we have a lunch break and make her sing and giggle.
Anyway, it came to our attention today that Furby is getting a reboot. There is a brand new Furby coming out this Fall via Hasbro, and as a purist I am not a fan.
The video at the side of the amazon page (that cannot be embedded) shows that this Furby is nothing like our dear Lola: http://www.amazon.com/gp/feature.html/?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&docId=1000821851&linkCode=ur2&tag=doobybraincom-20
This video makes it seem a little less offensive:
But clearly it’s still very loud. The eyes and the changes in personality are what bother me the most. But the interaction with the iPhone or iPad is kind of cool and the way it dances is hilarious. So it’s basically a thumbs down in my book, and I’m slightly offended and sad that there’s ANOTHER childhood toy being repackaged and rebranded. Stop stealing from our childhood toy companies! Can they possibly come up with something new??
Alright, non-fitness-related post over. It is my birthday today and I have a million things to write about and potentially even vlog tonight if I’m crazy enough to want to do that at midnight or whatever time all the festivities will eventually get me home. But let it be known the kid in me is not dead yet.
What’s your take on the Furby? yay or nay? What about this new one?