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How much do you tip a robot hotel bellhop? Is a squirt from an oil can enough? In the air, will a robot soon be offering you tea or coffee? Will a robot bartender listen to your sad story of a lost love affair?

A tech firm is developing Ava the iRobot. When fully geared up, the pre-programmed humanoid may be able to escort guests to hotel rooms, serve meals and check-out clerks at retail shops. The non-humans could tend bar, do hospital chores, maintain building security and perform many other similar tasks.

There’s no promise yet that Ava will replace TSA agents in frisking and fondling passengers in airport security areas.

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