HitchBOT, being built by communications researchers at Ryerson University in Toronto and McMaster University in Hamilton will try to bum its first ride from the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design on July 27. The researchers expect it to charm its way into enough rides to make it all the way to Victoria.
The robot is being built as a "collaborative art project," said a news release announcing its journey.
The robot will have high-tech communications abilities, including speech recognition and processing and 3G and WiFi connectivity. It will post to Twitter and can draw on Wikipedia to help it make conversation, the news release said.
However, the rest of its construction will be pretty low-tech – the only movement it can make will be with its hitchhiking arm.
David Harris Smith, an assistant professor at McMaster University who first came up with the idea of building a hitchhiking robot, expects it to be made of odds and ends such as pool noodles, garden gloves and a bucket.
A photo posted on the hitchbot Instagram account Monday showed that the robot's head is made from a cake saver – "which will protect all of my brain parts, including LEDs, plastic bearings, motors and a mirror," it wrote.
It tweeted that its body is "a work in progress."