Photo: Hiroshi Ishiguro/Osaka University/ATR

On the Tinder for robots, you don’t swipe left or right — you instead rate them on likability, appearance and overall desirability. Too many bad "appearance" ratings, and a bot lands in a modern hall of shame: the World’s Creepiest Robots.

Why it matters: Today’s most useful robots are giant arms that assemble cars and smartphones in enormous factories. But in the near future, robot builders want to make social bots that elicit empathy from people. First, they have to figure out how to make ones that aren’t totally horrifying.

Telenoid, a milky-white, nearly featureless robot that appears ready to feast on human souls, enjoys the top spot on the Creepiest Robots list.

  • According to the robot’s website, its "minimalistic" design is intended to appear "both male and female" and "both old and young."
  • It can mimic a faraway person’s facial expressions as they speak — acting as "a mobile phone shaped like an alien," according to IEEE, the organization behind the bot catalog.
  • The nightmarish bot is expected to sell for $8,000.

All five creepiest robots have human-like faces, but dead eyes and weird dull skin that shove them deep into the "uncanny valley," a term used to describe the dreadful quality of robots that try to emulate human features but fall short.

"Creepiest" is just one way of sorting IEEE’s catalog of nearly 200 robots. Choose to sort by "Top Rated" and you’ll see a very different set of machines. Tellingly, none are humanoid: The top two are animal-like bots, and nearly all the rest in the top ten bear no resemblance to living things.

Go deeper: Rate some bots!

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Updated 20 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Where key GOP senators stand on replacing Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell talks to reporters on Capitol Hill last Thursday. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

With President Trump planning to nominate his third Supreme Court justice nominee this week, key Republican senators are indicating their stance on replacing the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg with less than 50 days until Election Day.

The state of play: Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.) has vowed that "Trump’s nominee will receive a vote on the floor of the United States Senate." Two GOP senators — Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) and Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) — have said they oppose holding a vote before the election, meaning that two more defections would force McConnell to delay until at least the lame-duck session of Congress.

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Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

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Biden to Senate GOP after RBG passing: "Please follow your conscience"

Joe Biden made a direct appeal to Senate Republicans in a speech addressing the passing of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, urging them to "cool the flames that have been engulfing our country" by waiting to confirm her replacement until after the election.

The state of play: Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said soon after the news of Ginsburg's death that President Trump's nominee would get a vote on the Senate floor.