Activities at the El Al terminal would have been routine this afternoon except for the presence of a first-class passenger named Klatu who is bound for Tel Aviv where he is hosting the Bergmann sewing machines exhibit at the exhibition of new patents being held Sept. 2-12.
Klatu is no mortal human being. He is a 5 ft. 2-inch, 240-pound robot, produced by Quasar Industries of Rutherford, N.J. Klatu has a vocabulary of 4,800 words and is programmed to converse in Hebrew for this special assignment. Klatu can also recognize up to six individuals as well as vacuum floors, answer doorbells, serve refreshments, and monitor homes or offices for fire or burglary.
The first robot ever to travel to Israel, Klatu was observed, photographed and interviewed during check-in and later in the King David lounge where he served refreshments. Special arrangements provided for Klatu include an extendable seat belt, since he will make the entire trip to Israel standing up.
REMINDER: There will be no Bulletin dated Sept. 4 due to Labor Day, a postal holiday.
The Archive of the Jewish Telegraphic Agency includes articles published from 1923 to 2008. Archive stories reflect the journalistic standards and practices of the time they were published.