BlessU 2

A screen capture of the robot in action via YouTube

A controversial 'robot priest' which offers automated blessings in five different languages has been helping to mark 500 years since the Reformation in Germany. The metallic, box-like BlessU-2, which is based in the German town of Wittenberg where Martin Luther nailed his 95 theses to a church door, forms part of an exhibition marking the Reformation anniversary. Complete with a touchscreen chest, head and arms which it raises when offering blessings (it also recites a verse from the Bible and says 'God bless and protect you'), the robot was created to raise discussion about the future of the church and the potential of artificial intelligence. “We wanted people to consider if it is possible to be blessed by a machine, or if a human being is needed,” Stephan Krebs, of the Evangelical Church in Hesse and Nassau - which is behind the initiative - told The Guardian.

Micah Kiddy is a cat. He's also the author of a "mini-devotional book". The Bombay/Siamese cat's e-book, Micah Kiddy: 10 Inspirations From a Cat and His Creator, contains devotions consisting of stories from his life (some of which apparently aren't actually true), Scriptures and "life application paragraphs". "From the pain of rejection to the joy of experiencing the love of God, Micah takes his readers on a journey of faith, hope, healing and love as he exposes the human condition through the eyes of a cat," says a press release. The book is apparently the first in a series of 10. For more on Micah and his book, visit his website.

The prestigious Cambridge University has appointed a Lego professor (actually, his full title is "LEGO Professor of Play in Education, Development and Learning".) Professor Paul Ramchandani will take up the new role at the Centre for Research on Play in Education, Development and Learning (PEDAL) - which like his job, was funded through a £4 million grant from the LEGO Foundation - from January next year. Part of his new role will involve translating the research at the centre into "hard evidence for international and national bodies as they produce policy around children’s right to play".