Since the middle of last century, technologists have confidently predicted the imminent revolution in domestic and service robotics. We are told that intelligent robots will begin to appear in guises such as cars, vacuum cleaners, and even humanoids. These machines will lift the burden of work in our homes and offices by taking the role of cleaner, courier, nurse, and security guard among others. Robots will recognize their owners by appearance and voice, and understand natural modes of communication including gestures and speech. We will give simple commands such as "Set the table" or "Bring the coffee to my desk", and our service robot will have the necessary sensing and intelligence to fulfill the request. Robotic tele-presence will allow owners to remotely feed pets, check security and perform other tasks while away. Robotic aids will improve the quality of life for the elderly and disabled, while society as a whole will benefit from the reduced demand on health care services. Eventually, service robots will roam freely around our homes and offices to help in whatever way they see fit, driven by an internal emotional model and learning from their surroundings.