It would appear that when MIT isn’t working on top secret Flyfire Swarming Displays, they make Mebots.
What is a Mebot? Think of it as a way of being in the same room with someone, even though that other person is far away. Unfortunately, that other person has to take the form of a crab-like creature.
As you can see, the screen is made so the transmitted person’s head is oversized on this body, but the Mebot can also do an emoticon face as well. By the way, the neck on the Mebot is cable of “three degrees of freedom for simple emotional cues”.
I’m not certain how the neck giving emotional cues works, but I have to admit, your head movements can be just as much an emotional giveaway as your face. Not to mention one’s arms, which this thing has for some added expressions, especially those who can “talk with their hands”.
I can’t help but wonder if those little claws of hands could grab things off a desk, maybe even pinch something. Yeah, I don’t think you want to turn your back on the Mebot.
Anyway, this is still experimental tech at MIT, which means that it probably won’t be available anytime soon.