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Not all NASA robots drive around poking at rocks. This android will one day work alongside people on space stations. Robonaut is the same size and shape as a person in a space suit, so it can handle tasks typically performed by humans - its hands are even better articulated than an astronaut's gloved digits. The fact that it looks like Boba Fett? Lucky coincidence.
Awww, isn't it cuddly? Or maybe just creepy. MIT's Cynthia Breazeal is famous for building robots that humans have an emotional reaction to. Her newest creation, Leonardo, was bolted together in 2002 with the help of the movie monster gurus at Stan Winston Studio (their animatronics include the Terminator, the aliens in Aliens, and the dinosaurs in Jurassic Park). Leonardo can grab objects, make facial expressions and complex gestures, and even learn simple tasks (like turning lights on and off) through trial and error.
The smooth-talking, self-driving muscle car from the early '80s TV drama Knight Rider was so cool, it even upstaged David Hasselhoff. The success of this Trans-Am helped to usher in a new genre of show with supervehicles as heroes, from Airwolf to Stealth.
47. HAL 9000
Some tasks are too important to be left to humans. Just ask Hal 9000 from 2001: A Space Odyssey. The 1968 film gave the world the ultimate all seeing, all knowing - and apparently all ego - AI villain. It set the standard for machines that can think (and kill) like us but are too powerful to control.