The past couple of days, with almost a 1' of snow, makes me appreciate the I-Shovel!
I think that I may prefer remote control over the randomness (like the vacuum). While it wouldn't matter to me what path a vacuum cleaner takes, it does matter to me where the pile of now ends up, so having additional control would be appreciated. On the other hand, I wonder if it could be done through sensors - allowing the machine to know a "home" spot that is where the snow should end up.
The other thought I have when I see stuff like this is that theatre technicians should be doing more of this wacky, fun stuff. We have the capability to design and build automated pieces. Perhaps not fully robotic or with as many axis of motion, but experimenting with fun, non-theatre specific ideas can free us from a rigid set of technical design constraints. Plus, having experimented with other technologies we can extrapolate the knowledge gained into more effective technical design solutions.