Hitchhiking robot embarks on coast-to-coast tour across US

Co-creator David Harris Smith carries hitchBOT, a hitchhiking robot, during its' introduced to an American audience at the Peabody Essex Museum Thursday, July 16, 2015, in Salem, Mass. HitchBOT is set to embark on its' first cross-country hitchhiking trip of the U.S., after completing similar tips in Canada and Europe. The plans are for hitchBot to leave the Boston area Friday with a final destination goal of reaching San Francisco. (AP Photo/Stephan Savoia)
Co-creator David Harris Smith carries hitchBOT, a hitchhiking robot, during its' introduced to an American audience at the Peabody Essex Museum Thursday, July 16, 2015, in Salem, Mass. HitchBOT is set to embark on its' first cross-country hitchhiking trip of the U.S., after completing similar tips in Canada and Europe. The plans are for hitchBot to leave the Boston area Friday with a final destination goal of reaching San Francisco. (AP Photo/Stephan Savoia)

BOSTON (AP) — A hitchhiking robot has embarked on its first cross-country tour of the U.S. after similar trips in Canada and Europe.

The robot known as hitchBOT caught its first ride in Marblehead, Massachusetts, on Friday, with plans to end the trip in San Francisco. Along the way, it has a bucket list that includes Times Square, Mount Rushmore and the Grand Canyon.

The humanoid robot can’t move on its own, relying on strangers to drive it from place to place.

Researchers in Canada created the robot as an experiment to study how people interact with it. There are no rules limiting where travelers can take the robot or what they do with it.

Creator Frauke Zeller calls it an “art project in the wild” that invites people to participate.

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