Japan unveiled a Humanoid robot which can reproduce human actions, and emotions such as laughing and smiling.
The humanoid which is made in the image of a female Japanese model is called "Geminoid-F". Researchers from the Intelligent Robotics Laboratory at Osaka University have teamed up with robot maker Kokoro Co., Ltd. to create a realistic-looking remote-control female android that mimics the facial expressions and speech of a human operator.
The Geminoid F is an air servo-powered, remote-operated talking humanoid with eye, mouth, head, and shoulder mobility.
The Geminoid F's easy-to-use teleoperation system, which was developed by ATR Intelligent Robotics and Communication Laboratories, consists of a smart camera that tracks the operator's facial movements. The corresponding data is relayed to the robot's control system, which coordinates the movement of the pneumatic actuators to reproduce the expressions on the android's face.
The efficient design makes the robot much cheaper to produce than previous models. Kokoro plans to begin selling copies of the Geminoid F in May 2010 for about 10 million yen ($110,000) each.
The Japanese and their engineering skills have brought the movie Surrogates, starring Bruce Willis, a bit closer to reality.
Though this might appear a bit creepy to those of us in the western world, to be actually in the the same room as a machine which smiles walks and talks, Japanese are more accepting of robots. This is because the native Shinto religion often blurs boundaries between the animate and inanimate.
I guess those of us in the western world will have to undergo a bit of programming (pun intended) in order to accept this reality.
Humans should therefore be a bit fearful as these androids/humanoids are replacing us in workspace areas, which do not call for a high level of thought processing and informed responses.
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