First developed as a receptionist/secretary robot back in 2004, this human-looking robot was tested in a classroom in early 2009. In addition to its human-like appearance, Saya can express six basic human emotions—surprise, fear, disgust, anger, happiness, and sadness—because its face is made of stretchy rubber skin controlled by motors and wiring. It can also say simple, preprogrammed phrases like “Thank you,” while expressing pleasure. "Robots that look human tend to be a big hit with young children and the elderly," Hiroshi Kobayashi, Tokyo University of Science professor and Saya's developer,
told The Associated Press. "Children even start crying when they are scolded." However, Kobayashi has confessed that the machine is merely a learning tool, and will not be a replacement for teachers. He’s currently constructing a line of made-to-order Saya’s that will set you back about $51,000 apiece.