The $129 Sphero robot from Orbotix provides hours of remote-control fun. Developers are invited to use Sphero APIs to design smartphone games.
(Sphero robot video)
It’s called the Sphero, and when it’s not charging in its coaster-shaped station, it’s rolling around on any flat surface, weaving through obstacles and people like it’s self-possessed. Actually, there are several ways to send the Sphero into action. Using an Orbotix-developed UI, any Android or iOS device can use a standard joystick interface, but more interesting is the “drawing” capability, where you essentially draw out a pattern with your finger and the Sphero will then emulate it a couple of seconds later.
I can't resist spherical robots; SF fans (as well as fans of supermarionation) remember the early 1980's series The Terrahawks, which had spherical robots called Zeroids were used to fight the evil witch-like alien Zelda.