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"The science fiction method is dissection and reconstruction. You look at the world around you, and take it apart into its components. Then you take some of those components, throw them away, and plug in different ones, start it up and see what happens."
- Frederik Pohl

Gesturing Robot  
  A robot that uses gestures to communicate.  

In "Strange Playfellow" (aka "Robbie") by Isaac Asimov (1940) robots have not advanced to the point where they can talk, instead they use gestures. There is an impractical "talking robot" for display.

Robbie waited until she had caught her breath and then pulled gently at a lock of hair.
"You want something?" said Gloria, eyes wide in an apparently artless complexity that fooled her huge "nursemaid" not at all. He pulled the curl harder.
"Oh, I know. You want a story." Robbie nodded rapidly.
"Which one?" Robbie made a semi-circle in the air with one finger. The little girl protested, "Again? I've told you Cinderella a million times. Aren't you tired of it? -It's for babies."
Another semi-circle.
"Oh, well," Gloria composed herself, ran over the details of the tale in her mind (together with her own elaborations, of which she had several) and began...
From Robbie, by Isaac Asimov.
Published by Fictioneers, Inc. in 1940
Additional resources -

Thanks to Winchell Chung (aka @nyrath) of Project Rho for contributing this item.

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Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from Robbie
  More Ideas and Technology by Isaac Asimov
  Tech news articles related to Robbie
  Tech news articles related to works by Isaac Asimov

Gesturing Robot-related news articles:
  - Robonaut 2 Uses American Sign Language (ASL) on ISS

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