Robot cleans all household floor surfaces
Few would argue with kicking back in front of the TV while the floor around you is being automatically cleaned without any human intervention. The iRobot Corporation's "Roomba" Intelligent FloorVac does just that - cleaning all household floor surfaces including carpet, tile, wood and linoleum. The Roomba navigates around the floor in a spiral pattern until its bumper comes into contact with an object or a wall. Once it has made contact, sensors allow the device to clean along the wall until it begins another spiral or makes a straight run across the floor to reach another section of the room, eventually covering each part of the room 2-5 times before its automatically shuts down. The two-stage cleaning process utilises both a vacuum and rotating brushes and there's also a special edge-cleaning mode to clean against kickboards in the kitchen and "cliff-avoidance" sensors to detect and avoid stairs. This combined with the small size of the unit make it versatile enough to clean underneath beds or furniture less than ten centimetres off the floor.The Roomba Intelligent FloorVac is the first automatic floor vaccuum available in the U.S and costs US$199.95. Dyson have also produced a robot vaccum cleaner in the UK - visit article 1282 to read Gizmo's coverage.