A teddy bear that watches your every move. A doll that can listen to you. A toy with a mind of its own. Chucky. These are the things of our nightmares, items used to scare children and adults in horror movies and, now, the subject of a Google patent.
The company recently received a patent titled “Agent interfaces for interactive electronics that support social cues,” which was filed back in 2012. It sounds innocent enough, except the photos inside the patent depict stuffed animals crammed with microphones, video cameras, speakers and motors.
The patent describes “an anthropomorphic device, perhaps in the form factor of a doll or toy, [that] may be configured to control one or more media devices. Upon reception or a detection of a social cue, such as movement and/or a spoken word or phrase, the anthropomorphic device may aim its gaze at the source of the social cue.” It’s like a smarter, creepier Furby. The stuffed animals can then react to voice commands given by a human.
Maybe Google wants to create really fun and smart kid’s toys. Or maybe, just maybe, this is how Chucky is actually born.