Enter the world of I,Robot perhaps? Japanese robotics engineer, Hiroshi Ishiguro, unveiled human like robots, to be displayed and used in a Tokyo museum. The two robots not only look eerily human, but they have also been equipped with the ability to speak smoothly, and even interject humor and flustered responses. The two robots comprise a younger looking female, and an adult female. The life sized robots will be involved with interactive activities with the public at the National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation.
During a demonstration, the younger robot named, Kodomoroid, displayed smooth and complex speech, during a voice over. The older robot named, Ontonaroid, could be seen swaying her head from side to side and moving her hands.
There were minor glitches during the demonstration but a winning demo overall. The robots are encased within artificial muscles, and silicon skin. They will begin their new jobs on Wednesday, and will be remotely controlled to interact extensively with the public.
Ishiguro is placing his creations in the museum to collect data on how everyday people interact with machines. The creator is so enamored by his ability to create Androids, he has even developed one that resembles himself, and sent it to give lectures overseas.
The creator stated the community of robotic experts want “robots to become increasingly clever.”
The alarm bells sound for many in the general public, who fear the worse case scenario after movies depict robots becoming so clever, they take over humanity. Movies like the Terminator, Hellboy, the Matrix, A.I., Short Circuit and I, Robot, depict above intelligent robots who can outsmart humans.
For creative explorers like Ishiguro, he states the feedback of his creations are important. It also delves into the question of “what is human?”
Ishiguro also announced an Android called Pepper, will be placed on sale to the public, in Japan, starting next year. The price of the robot will be $2,000. As Ishiguro looks to build a community of rapidly evolving bots, many ponder what will the future hold.
For one bot named Kodomoroid, she shares her future dream is to have “my own TV show.”
by Paul Rivera