Elon Musk, Tesla and SpaceX tech billionaire, had been the richest man in the world for less than a week at the beginning of January when he lost the spot to the previous richest man in the world, Amazon and Blue Origin tech billionaire Jeff Bezos. That was just about the most riveting tech development from the very beginning of 2021—our minds were occupied by events rather more pressing—until mid-January, when the biggest brands (and quite a few tiny ones) virtually gathered to display their latest at the annual CES trade show.

At the show, devices weird, innovative, and incredibly useful were shown off and bragged about. There was a neat little wireless charging dock, but there was also a flying car and a robot that plays the piano. There was a slew of 5G smartphones, versatile laptops, and luxury TVs, and quite a few inventions that reflect our desire for a cleaner, less diseased world, like a high-tech, transparent, light-up N95 face mask from Razer that’d make the wearer look like a character from the glitch-tastic Cyberpunk 2077.

Moorebot Scout

In a confluence of the surveillance state, heightened home security concerns, and consumer interest in baby cams and robot vacuums, Moorebot revealed a robot that functions as an autonomous surveillance camera on wheels, powered by AI tech. Basically, those Monster Truck-looking tires give it theself-driving mobility advantage over mounted cameras. Instead of one of those “Beware of Dog” signs, you’ll need one that reads “Beware of Robot.” Potential apocalyptic scenarios abound.

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