If you're fed up with your office colleagues and their annoying habits like spending half the day on Facebook or calling in sick when all that's wrong is about eight pints too many the night before, then perhaps it's time to lobby the boss to draft in Hitachi's latest office-helper robot.

EMIEW 2 (it stands for 'Excellent Mobility and Interactive Existence as Workmate' - nice, eh?) is designed to do the dirty tasks modern humans can't be bothered with. Given that these jobs include delivering messages, running errands and keeping up with group plans, we suspect it's work per se that the modern cubicle dweller has a beef with.

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Anyway, we digress - EMIEW 2 is an 80cm-tall, 13kg droid with more high tech onboard than many of its larger robot pals. Among the tricks it can perform are zipping from desk to desk on whatever the current mission is, route planning using radar and dropping to its knees to roll on four wheels for extra stability.

Although EMIEW isn't on sale yet, Hitachi hopes to offer it commercially soon. Before that happens, however, it will have to fix the very human malfunction that saw it stagger around and fall over at a demonstration in Tokyo yesterday - must've been a bad can of WD-40.