[NetBehaviour] Say hello to your robot self.
marc.garrett at furtherfield.org
Mon Oct 16 19:58:54 CEST 2006
Say hello to your robot self.
By TIM HORNYAK.
KEIHANNA, JAPAN — With little more than a train station and a few
government buildings, the sleepy town of Keihanna is a far cry from the
dazzling celluloid cityscapes of Fritz Lang's Metropolis and Ridley
Scott's Blade Runner. But just as in those classics of science fiction,
futuristic robots are coming to life here -- androids that are
astonishingly realistic, and could challenge our ideas of what we
Hiroshi Ishiguro is at the forefront of designing machines that look
just like us. The senior researcher at Keihanna's ATR Intelligent
Robotics and Communication Laboratories drew headlines around the world
last year when he unveiled a robot that, from a few feet away, could
easily have been mistaken for a Japanese woman.
Equipped with off-board cameras, microphones and floor sensors, Repliee
Q1Expo can detect human presence and interview people with a microphone,
moving its upper body in a smooth, natural fashion. All of which makes
perfect sense, since Repliee is an android copy of Ayako Fujii, a real
Yet Dr. Ishiguro, a fan of Star Trek's android Data, wasn't content with
his Pygmalion creation. Repliee was designed as a research tool for what
he terms "android science" -- a mixture of robotics and cognitive
science in which androids can be used to study human behaviour such as
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