Sci-Bono Discovery Centre’s RoboDog has disappeared and the science centre is appealing to anyone with information on its whereabouts to come forward.

The dog was last seen late yesterday afternoon (Thursday, November 25) when the Discovery Centre in Newtown, Johannesburg closed for business.

Its loss was discovered this morning when it could be found nowhere at the 4IR flagship exhibition of Sci-Bono, or anywhere else at the centre.

RoboDog is the smallest of the four robots on exhibition at Sci-Bono. It is no more than 45cm tall; metallic black and programmed to perform a wide range of tricks on command.

The RoboDog, worth hundreds of thousands of rands, comes when he’s called, sits, begs, stays, rolls over and performs somersaults.

He’s a charming, charismatic and extremely valuable member of the Sci-Bono 4IR robot family and Discovery Centre management and staff are desperate to get him back.

“RoboDog and the other three robots — Pepper and the two Sandbot Maxes — are doing a wonderful job introducing people to the wonders of 4IR: the science and application of technology and the critically important role information technology and robotics are taking as we move into the future,” says Sci-Bono chief executive, Dr More Chakane.

“It’s sometimes easy to forget that these four members of the Sci-Bono family are not cognisant, conscious beings. We have all become very attached to them.

“When people come to meet and engage with the robotic family, the interest in science is sharpened. Youngsters contemplate careers in the sciences and adults gain deeper appreciation of the many ways that the sciences enable economic development and lifestyle improvements.”

Dr Chakane appeals to anybody with information on the whereabouts of RoboDog to call Akash Dusrath at 011 639 8400. All information received will be dealt with in strict confidence.