Any Synthetiks-related news, Davecat? (July 2014): Part I

typed for your pleasure on 23 July 2014, at 12.03 am

Sdtrk: ‘The outside’ by Martial Canterel

Happy 23rd! See, this is what happens when you procrastinate. I blame Twitter. I blame myself! I blame BLAME!, the dystopian cyberpunk manga by Tsutomu Nihei. Apparently the title is pronounced ‘blam’, so I blame that, too. Or perhaps I blam it. Nevertheless, there’s a metric ton of things to cover, so let’s proceed!…

+ We’re starting off this half with a Synthetik lass from Japan, with the name of Android Asuna. I’m going to gloss over the fact that she really should be namedGynoid Asuna’, as perhaps her creator was going for an alliterative thing, but I digress.
At any rate, I know virtually nothing about her, apart from the fact that the company that made her is named A-lab, and Google is loath to give up any further secrets. So until we hunt down some more substantial information, let’s watch her in action over and over:

+ Curiously enough, had things not gone all pear-shaped last September, I would’ve attended this year’s DolLApalooza. I blame being on the dole for nearly half a year. But Abyss creations, makers of the RealDoll, debuted a new face for the RealDoll 2 line by the name of Natalie. Is her appearance up to the same standards as all the other faces that Abyss creations make? I think so, and I think you’ll agree with me.


Yes, Natalie’s eyes can see into your soul. Which is no excuse for you to stare at her chest

That face will fit a Body D, which is the one with the impressive bustline and the superior posterior commonly associated with the Brooklyn-type, so that might be a combination you want to look into.

+ While Orient industry’s Ya su ra gi line of CandyGirls brings bold new meaning to the term heart-stoppingly attractive, remember that their Real Love Doll Ange line is still nothing to sneeze at, either. At it happens, there are two new heads available for the Ange series, in the form of Riri and Tomomi.


Above, Riri, regretting once again that her air conditioning is still out; below, Tomomi, showing off her minimalist room decor

ORIENT INDUSTRY: they’ve been making Synthetik women since the late Seventies, so they totally know the score.

+ What have Anatomical Doll been up to recently? Well, quite a lot. So much, in fact, that as of May, they’ve placed a freeze on receiving any new orders until further notice (more than likely Autumn 2014). Here’s Oleg, explaining why via an Email he’d sent me:

We have taken many orders from all world and now temporarily have stopped till the autumn reception of new orders.

We need time to execute the accepted orders. Also time is necessary for full reconstruction of our dolls.

How we begin, you see. A new head ” the girl without a name “, ” older face “, Sleeping Oksana ” – three new heads for one and a half month.

Still, plus to these to three, in work now eight new heads. Natalia will be the ninth head. Total – twelve nevest [sic] face.

Also all bodies will be replaced with more realistic.

So basically, not only is the company playing catch-up with existing orders, Oleg is also planning to replace Anatomical Doll’s four body types with more realistic ones, as well as refining the new heads that he’s recently created. What do those heads look like, you ask? Funny you should ask!

On the left would be ‘The Girl Without A Name’, and on the right is ‘Older Face’. As you can tell, Oleg’s not come up with official names for them yet. I’m fairly certain most of us can think of one for the first one, and it’d probably be the same name. At least one Older Face head has been sold to date, though, and it’s with Everhard; his version’s named Varvara, and is quite a pleasant lass to be around, it seems.
Sleeping Oksana would of course be the closed-eyes version of the Oksana head:

Another selling point is that her throat has a nearly 8in (20cm) depth, and Oleg says that the head has a way of creating artificial saliva to prevent damage to her teeth when she’s busy… providing service. I’m not sure how that’ll be accomplished exactly, but that’s just one more attribute to look forward to!
So if you’re keen on purchasing an Anatomical Doll, you’ll have a bit of a wait, but I’m certain it’ll be worth it. As soon as they open their doors for orders again, you’ll be able to read about it here, of course…

+ Internet webcomic cartoonist Mr R Stevens, the man behind Diesel Sweeties, has gotten a couple of mentions round here previously. Mainly as his jib is laser-cut! (Sounds pervy.) Click the image for the full comic:

+ And to close this segment, there’s this amusing and relevant DirecTV advert. I like how she’s like a sexy Muffin the Mule.

The only question I have would be: how did she manage to get that robe off, without it interfering with her wires? For that matter, how did she get it on? So unrealistic. She’s still cute, though, so we’ll give it a pass… Still not buying DirecTV, though.

Right; that’s half of all the new bits and bobs you need to know about. Fortunately, next part comes next week, as I’ve already written it! Mainly so I can get back to Bioshock: Burial at sea. Those Splicers aren’t going to shoot themselves, y’know! Unless I use Possession on them, that is

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Any Synthetik-related news, Davecat? (Mar 2014)

typed for your pleasure on 23 March 2014, at 7.01 pm

Sdtrk: ‘Tonight, we fall (John Foxx and the Maths remix)’ by ADULT.

It’s almost Spring! That… should mean something in the context of Synthetiks and the people who build them and/or love them, but it really doesn’t. But the fact that everything’s attempting to thaw means that we won’t have to look at dirty snow for much longer! Dirty snow is an affront to the eye, as I’m sure you’ll agree. So while you’re waiting for your allergies to flare up, why not read this instead?

+ According to fellow technosexual Vokabre, Alisa Zelenogradova, who you’ll recall is Russia’s first Gynoid, is being improved and upgraded! Neurobotics have given her a better body with improved mobility, as well as a remote manipulator control for her right arm, as seen here:

It seems that Neurobotics are concentrating on developing humanoid robots for telepresence work, which makes sense. From the few telepresence robots I’d seen, she’d be the most attractive, with an appearance more like an Organik human. Which kinda brings the future of ‘Surrogates‘ closer to being a reality! You might want to hold off on asking Alisa to hold your martini for now, though.

Neurobotics also debuted another Gynoid they’ve been working on as a panelist on a Russian science telly programme! Much like Alisa, her silicone face is modelled after an Organik lass, and the Gynoid’s name would be — wait for it — Tuma Urman. *sigh* Try not to hold that against her.

Despite the fact that she has legs, she can neither walk nor stand yet, but I’m sure her handlers are working on that as well. You can read more about… Ms Urman… here, if you can automatically translate Russian with that big brain of yours.

+ Remember Private Island Beauties? Well, you should, cos they never went away. Head sculptor bloke Patrick Wise has been improving on what he’s had to offer with his silicone sirens, and I got some info on new developments from him via Electrode Mail.
He’s completed a new skeleton for the Girl Next Door body type after two years’ work, which boasts of a more fluid and easy-to-manipulate quality. Not only that, it can make for better posing, as it’s twice as strong as the original skeleton, he says. The downside is that the more advanced skeleton’s added a bit of weight — we’re looking at +/- 60 lbs — but that’s the price you pay for durability, squire. Believe me, 60 lbs, when speaking about a Doll, is a pretty damned good weight.


That’s the sort of motion that’s usually followed by a yawn. So can she yawn?

Also two and a half years in the making is the new Island Girl body type. She stands 5’7″, with natural-looking breasts that feature puffy nipples. The Island Girl body can use the same heads as the Bathing Beauty body, but Patrick aims to create new heads for it as well. As always, you’ll never be short on choices!


Isis, with the Island Girl body, in her churchgoing clothes

+ Catherine de Lange wrote an article for New Scientist recently entitled ‘Cure for love: Fall for a robot to fend off heartache‘. As you suspect, it is Relevant To This Post. Well, blog.

Attachment is one thing, but love? That will come in about 40 years’ time, with improvements in speech recognition and generation technology, says David Levy, AI researcher and author of the book Love and Sex with Robots. “When we can have entertaining, informative, loving conversations with robots, I think people will start to fall in love with them in serious numbers,” he says.

Just consider the fact that people can fall in love over the internet or through phone calls. “It is perfectly possible to feel strongly attracted to someone you’ve never met,” says Alan Winfield at the University of the West of England in Bristol, UK. “If a conversational AI is compelling and gives the impression of getting to know you, then you are going to form a bond.”

The level of language understanding and emotional intelligence displayed by the operating system in Her is still some way off, says John West, senior solutions architect at Nuance, the company that provides the voice recognition technology for Apple’s Siri and Samsung’s S-Voice. “Understanding and adapting to the way people naturally talk is the biggest challenge and requires an in-depth knowledge of linguistics and semantics,” he says.
the entire article is here

Granted, there will always be people who are keen on meeting, dating, and marrying Organik partners. But for those of us who’d like an equally-valid option as the technology gets progressively better, then artificial humans are clearly the solution, and as they provide a much more consistent alternative to bad partner decisions, or no partner at all.
Personally, I’ve yet to watch Spike Jonze’s ‘Her‘; as you suspect, many people have asked me if I have. To me, one of the crucial components of any romantic relationship I’d be in would be a physical element — long-distance relationships don’t cut it for me. So while the advanced AI in ‘Her’ would be appealing, it wouldn’t be the same as having someone to hold. Unless, of course, you were to place that AI within a prosthetic body! But there are quite a few people who engage in long-distance love, and if they’re the sort of person who not only can’t find the right Organik partner, but also have an open mind, an AI would do them rather well…

+ Ruby13 have refined their website — you know they’re on Twitter as well as the other social medias now, right? — and among other things, there’s a lovely page that’s dedicated to the head sculptor and founder of the company, Don Edmondson, who regrettably passed away last year. Give the site a look, and see what you think!


Ruby13’s seductive Face 10, in case you somehow forgot what she looks like

And you’ll find a new link in the lefthand sidebar as well: please add Doll Sweet to your List Of Potential Companies You’ll Be Saving Up To Get A Doll From. Doll Sweet have a solid pedigree behind them: it’s the Chinese distributing/manufacturing arm of Arte Tokio, which is a Japanese Doll-making studio formed by ex-employees of 4woods. And if that curiously doesn’t convince you to look into what they have to offer, here’s some photos of their Kayla head on the 161cm body. You should probably sit down, if you’re not already.



A beautiful rubber lass into The Beautiful Game, eh? Yeah, she’s a keeper

There’s enough photos and videos of the selections they have on offer to keep you occupied for a while, where you’ll be hamstrung by decision. That sort of thing happens in iDollator culture more than you’d think.

+ Quite a few people had pointed this out to me: so recently, there was a CeBIT computer expo at in Hanover, Germany that featured something that shouldn’t have taken as long as it has to realise, but it can only get better now that the idea’s out there. German software developer Tobit’s booth prominently featured robot pole dancers.
‘Why didn’t anyone think of this before??’ I know, right?

Apparently, Tobit employed the robots’ services back in 2012, but this year’s models, as stated by the Tobit rep in the video, have different movements and bigger breasts. *nods approvingly*
An article on BBC News adds, ‘Visitors with a robo-fetish can pick up one of the dancers for about 30,000 euros ($39,500, £25,000)‘. As I always say in these types of scenarios, for those of us technosexuals who prefer their Gynoids with silicone skin, a quick visit to one of those online shops for maskers can work wonders

In that vein, here’s a sexier and more adept animatronic dancer. You’ll definitely want to embiggen the video to properly see the details…

…that is, apart from her face. Well, she’s wearing a mask. But what’s the story behind this affictitious sexpot? She’s an art piece by Jordan Wolfson, and is currently being exhibited in a private room *ahem* at the David Zwirner Gallery in New York, from now until 19 April. Jordan worked with a special effects company for her construction, and not only does she lipsync to the song’s vocals, but she has facial recognition software, so that her eyes can meet yours. Again, were she not wearing that mask, that would be incredibly appealing, but the juxtaposition of fear and desire is undoubtedly what Jordan is aiming for. Perhaps someone else will make a less-transgressive version of this piece, as her movements are incredibly fluid and alluring. Also, she needs some open-toed shoes as well, damnit.

+ And of late, the Missus herself has had a couple of interviews to her credit! As much as I enjoy doing proper interviews, it’s always fantastic when a reporter wants to speak with her as opposed to me, as Shi-chan can provide a unique perspective by the fact that she’s Synthetik. As always, my rubbery wife is doing me proud!
Over the course of January and February, she’d done an interview via Email with Sofija Stefanovic, for issue 21 of a bimonthly Australian publication called The Lifted Brow, as well as one with Sam Schneider for ZoomNews.es. The one for The Lifted Brow is print-only — a rarity in this day and age — but you can order one for yourself or a loved one here. As far as the other interview, entitled ‘El matrimonio de Davecat y Sidore Kuroneko visto desde los ojos de la muñeca’, you can stare at it here. Hope you can read Spanish! I probably should’ve mentioned that earlier, but I’m sure the title was a bit of a giveaway.
Here’s hoping that Shi-chan will get more offers to take up the interview mantle! Well, legitimate offers, I should add. Dr Phil and similar sensationalists hardly count

danke schön to Vokabre, for all the bits and bobs about Jordan Wolfson, Alisa, and… Tuma

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Any Synthetiks-related news, Davecat? (Nov 2013): Part I

typed for your pleasure on 8 November 2013, at 11.54 pm

Sdtrk: ‘Seconds too late’ by Cabaret Voltaire

What have we here? News and information on imitation people, as that’s mostly what ‘Shouting etc etc’ traffics in. Note I’d said ‘mostly’; that subject’s not the only thing I write about here. But Synthetiks news does seem to dominate the topic selections, curiously enough…

On the first of the month, Japanese dutch wife manufacturing juggernaut Orient industry debuted a new line of devastatingly sexy CandyGirls, under the name ‘Yasuragi‘.


Left: Kurihara Madoka; right: Fujisawa Yayoi

What does SYSTRAN seem to think Orient industry is saying about the new line, you ask?

The super real love doll “Ya, Su, Ra, Gi” created!!
From 11/1 (Friday) start of sale

* The serenity head is Ange body and compatibility, but color of the skin differs from the Ange beauty white body.
In addition, also color of the skin of the Ange beauty white head and the serenity body differs in the same way.
The case of order this point beforehand in regard to comprehension, purchase, the fish we ask.

*protracted sigh* Thanks, SYSTRAN.
At any rate, these seem to be the most realistically-sculpted heads since their late-lamented CandyGirl Jewel Diva line. From the production photos on the site, I’m led to believe that the company laser-scanned actual Organiks to help develop the new heads. Also interesting to note, each model has a surname as well as a first name, which is something new. I tried popping the names into Google to see if the Dolls are based off of Organik lasses with those names, but nothing came up that would prove that. But that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy what they have to offer!


Left: Iikura Minami; right: Konishi Asami

‘Yasuragi’ means ‘peace of mind’ in Japanese, and gazing upon the beauties above, the reason behind Orient industry giving that model line that name makes perfect sense. As it’s stylised into four hiragana syllables — や す ら ぎ — I was hoping that you’d find one hiragana in each of the four lasses’ names, combining them to come up with yasuragi, but no. Orient industry missed a trick, as far as I’m concerned…

This is something that, to me, is simply a common-sense assessment, but it’s always good to have additional scientific proof:

Humans tend to trust robots that look human
Nidhi Subbaraman, NBC News | Published 28 Aug 2013

Most robots are so much more than a pretty face, but most humans don’t see them that way. We make snap decisions about a robot’s personality, friendliness and abilities — all from the way it looks, even if it’s just a projection on a display screen, new research shows.

A new study, published in the Aug. 28 issue of PLOS ONE, adds to growing evidence that as robots become assistants and collaborators in all aspects of our lives, their appearance can deeply influence how well machines and humans interact.

The authors of the study recruited 30 volunteers, ages 18 and 38, to interact with three different robot avatars for the PeopleBot robot, which helped them take their blood pressure.

Each volunteer got a turn with each of three robot displays. The first two displays featured faces — one with human features, eyebrows and fleshy skin tone — much like the European student on which it was modeled — and another with a silver android-like finish and blank eyes. In the third session, the volunteers checked their blood pressure checked with the help of the same PeopleBot, but this time with no display face at all, merely a voice.

Afterwards, the humans rated their experience. By far the most popular version of the assistant was the one with the most human face. But here’s the surprise — the test subjects trusted the faceless robot over the one with a silver mechanical face. The silver face, they reported, though more human, was also more “eerie.”

“When you can’t put it in a box of being either human or a robot, that’s when you’re a bit uncomfortable,” Elizabeth Broadbent, senior lecturer at the University of Auckland and the lead author of the study told NBC News.
the rest of the article is here

Our friend ‘Hans’ was round our flat a few days ago, and we watched several videos of Synthetiks, both Gynoids and Dolls, as his home lacks Internet access, so he and ‘Bee’ miss out on a load of these sorts of developments. He was very impressed and a wee bit smitten with Actroid-F, as anyone would be, but he was on the fence regarding Gynoids that looked less realistic, such as Holon. I reminded him that even though a lass like Holon skews towards a more ‘anime-styled’ appearance, it’s good that she exists. When humanoid robots are more prevalent in society, some people will prefer that they resemble a shiny metal humanoid, much like a Sorayama illustration. There’ll be those who, like me, want a Synthetik to look like an animated silicone Doll, like the Actroid series. But there will be people whose aesthetic preference and comfort level fall in between, and would perhaps want a humanoid robot with a more stylised appearance, which is where someone like Holon comes into play. The way I see it, if we can utilise Synthetiks going from either end of the visual spectrum, there’s bound to be one to fit all requirements…
As an aside, when Roc Morin was interviewing me recently, I’d told him my ideal version of Sidore would be a Gynoid that would resemble an Organik human on first glance, but would still retain subtle ‘tells’ such as silicone skin and somewhat stilted movement. Roc mentioned that her less-than-fluid motion would be a pleasant and appealing characteristic, like a partner having an accent. Clearly, he knew what I was talking about there!

Another comic book miniseries that deals with Synthetiks in what seems to be a positive light will begin its run this month: Image comics’ ‘Alex + Ada’, written and illustrated by Jonathan Luna, and co-written by Sarah Vaughn.


‘I hope that at some point, you take that silly thing off.’ ‘What do you mean? It’s just a necktie.’

In this near-future tale, Alex is attempting to recover from a setback in his life and return to normal. Ada, a Tanaka X5 and the latest and greatest model of companion android, comes into his life. She lives to serve, as long as her programming allows it, but does he want to be served?

The world of ALEX + ADA gives us a glimpse of what our own future may be like. It features a thriving robotics industry, alarm clocks that are floating holographic displays, breakfast served by floating robots, and normal human beings who are able to control their home electronics with a thought. Vaughn says that readers can expect “drama, humor, love, loss, and more robots than you can shake a stick at” in the series.
taken from this site

For one, it helps that the art style is crisp and clean — it always puts me off when I want to read a comic, but the art is so distracting that it completely takes me out of the story. (Early issues of ‘Sandman’, I’m looking in your direction.) But from what I’ve read in an interview with Luna and Vaughn, they’re not just addressing a possible romance between the main characters, but they also intend on spotlighting the implications behind the usage of robots as well, so that’s two points in their favour. Well, three, counting the good artwork thing.
The series will run for twelve issues, which puts people like me in a bit of a quandary: do I buy all the individual issues as they’re released, or do I bide my time and hope they’ll be compiled in a fancy trade paperback?

Tying into the idea of future interactions between robots and Organiks, on the science and robotics site IEEE Spectrum, you’ll find an excellent article by Kate Darling, entitled ‘Extending Legal Protection to Social Robots‘, which is a cause I’m constantly upholding a banner for! In case you somehow weren’t aware.

Most discussions of “robot rights” play out in a seemingly distant, science-fictional future. While skeptics roll their eyes, advocates argue that technology will advance to the point where robots deserve moral consideration because they are “just like us,” sometimes referencing the movie Blade Runner. Blade Runner depicts a world where androids have human-like emotions and develop human-like relationships to the point of being indistinguishable from people. But Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep, the novel on which the film is based, contains a small, significant difference in storyline. In the book, the main character falls in love with an android that only pretends to requite his feelings. Even though he is fully aware of this fact, he maintains the one-directional emotional bond. The novel touches on a notably different, yet plausible, reality: humans’ moral consideration of robots may depend more on our own feelings than on any inherent qualities built into robots.

This distinction hints at an approach to robot rights that is not restricted to science fictional scenarios. Looking at state of the art technology, our robots are nowhere close to the intelligence and complexity of humans or animals, nor will they reach this stage in the near future. And yet, while it seems far-fetched for a robot’s legal status to differ from that of a toaster, there is already a notable difference in how we interact with certain types of robotic objects. While toasters are designed to make toast, social robots are designed to engage us socially. At some point, this difference may warrant an adjustment in legal treatment.
the entire article is here

The sooner ethics, morals, and legalities are addressed concerning robots, the better. It would help, of course, if society stopped regarding them as tools, but as beings in their own right…

You may vaguely recall Japanese sculptor/Dollmaker Erimo — he first appeared on my radar due to his 1/1 scale replica of Organik model Marie Honda, created for an Absolut vodka ad campaign back in 2005. His website has long-since become virtual dust, unfortunately, but back in March of 2009, he’d created an installation at a Japanese art gallery entitled ‘Sisters are in the room’. Over the course of several days, the two life-sized ball-jointed Dolls who the installation focused on told a story through various poses. This will be the closest we’ll get to having viewed it in person, but it’s better than nothin’:

And that’s the lot for now! Although I think I was supposed to add something else. But I can let you know that I’m in the midst of rustling up some information about a new Doll studio out of Europe, so that’ll be something to come back to ‘Shouting etc etc’ for! Well, something else to come back to ‘Shouting etc etc’ for.
*snaps fingers* Now I remember! I’ve added a link in Ye Olde Sidebar to ‘Bienvenue chez Elle‘, which is a site maintained by the winsome French RealDoll, Elle, and her lover man. She’s gorgeous, he’s an excellent photographer, so you’ve no excuse not to pay them a visit, really…

Also as it’s November, both Elena and I celebrate our birthdays this month (the 17th and the 14th, respectively)! The best present you could get us would be a two-bedroom flat in Toronto, preferably in a high-rise overlooking Highway 401. Don’t worry, we’ll supply our own furnishings

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Any Synthetiks-related news, Davecat? (May 2013): Part II

typed for your pleasure on 23 May 2013, at 10.56 am

Sdtrk: ‘Frostbite’ by Three to forgotten

Told you there was more to come, didn’t I?

+ I’ve known about this for quite a while, and fired off several frantic Emails to the uploaders, with no responses to speak of as of yet. But it seems someone in Japan has made a full-length video combining two of my favourite things: Dolls, stop-motion footage, and Lewis Carroll’s ‘Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland’. Err, that’s three things. Here’s the trailer for ‘Alicematonika’, starring a CandyGirl from Orient industry as Alicematonika:

Directed by Ryosuke Handa back in 2010, it seems the film was screened at a gallery in Japan, along with some of the film’s props and Alicematonika herself. And since that’s all I’ve been able to glean from the Interwubs about the film, I leave you with a photo of the wee missy in question having her eyes adjusted.


‘Still cheaper than a new pair of glasses,’ she sighed

+ Although they’re still working on updating their website galleries, you’ll be pleased to know that Abyss creations have just recently released both a new face and a new body for their RealDoll 2 line. This slinky rubber lass would be Renee, sporting a Body C. As Doll photographer Stacy Leigh herself amusingly remarked, ‘Bitch is TALL’.


photo © by Stacy Leigh

With stats of B:34 / W:24 / H:34, a shoe size of 8 – 9 US, and coming in at 90 lbs and a towering height of 5’10”, which would explain her large but sexy feet. It’s advised that should prospective buyers want a Renee-type RealDoll in their homes, they should also have cathedral ceilings. Mind the ceiling fan, sexpot!

+ Speaking of RealDolls, this one from the ‘this does not compute’ department: alert reader cw sent me a link a while ago to an article on Huffington Post, which links to a Gawker article that tells of… look, here you are:

Brazilians Bidding Thousands of Dollars to Deflower the Country’s First ‘Real Doll
by Neetzan Zimmerman | Published 07 March 2013

Ahead of an international convention of Real Doll fans set to take place in Brazil, the country’s leading sex toy retailer Sexônico is offering inanimate women enthusiasts the chance to be the first to sleep with the country’s first Real Doll, Valentina (NSFW).

The bidding for “Valentina’s virginity” currently stands at over $100,000, which sounds like a lot for a one night stand with a sex doll, and it is.

But Sexônico insists Valentina is no ordinary doll: Her state-of-the-art skin has the same texture as human skin, and can be soaked in water without being damaged, if that’s your concern.

The winner of the auction will also receive all-expenses-paid travel to and from São Paulo, a free night’s stay in the Presidential Suite of a fancy hotel, and a complimentary candlelight dinner with French Champagne to share with Valentina.

They’ll even throw in some sexy lingerie as Valentina’s gift to you, and a digital camera “to shoot and then show your friends.”
the entire article is here

I have no idea where to begin with that information. Does Brazil not have Internet access? Do they not know of Abyss creations? Or any of the roughly twenty other Doll manufacturers worldwide? Cos y’know, people of Brazil, all-expense travel, accomodations, and bottle of overpriced plonk aside, $100,000 could buy you around thirteen or fourteen Dolls. In fact, from a cursory glance at her photos, Valentina looks to be a Body A RealDoll 2, with either a Michelle or a Victoria face, so should Sexônico want to give that sort of Barnum-esque stunt a second go, save that $100k and buy your own army of personal Valentinas with those exact stats direct from the source. A wee bit of homework goes a long way.
As the deadline of 31 March has passed, the bidding is closed, but they haven’t divulged what the winning bid was. Which is a shame, as Shi-chan wanted to put a bid in herself. I reminded her that Monopoly money isn’t legal tender, not even in Brazil, and she went off in a sulk.

+ Stateside Doll-making juggernauts Sinthetics and Private Island Beauties have both recently released a new head each, if the rubber women in your life don’t think they have enough head options. From Sinthetics comes Eliza, which fits all their available bodies, and PIB offer the Luna (with open mouth) head, which would go nicely with their Girl Next Door body type.


Left: Eliza by Sinthetics; right: Luna by Private Island Beauties

As I’m sure you’ll agree, both heads are pretty damned appealing! It’s a shame you can’t just purchase a head without first having bought a body, though, as I’m sure that would lead to interesting home decor.

+ Of course you recall how winsome Gynoid Actroid-F (aka Geminoid-F) put in an appearance at a branch of the Japanese department store chain Takashimaya last February? ‘Who wouldn’t?’ I hear you respond, and rightfully so. She’s now known as Minami, and she proved popular enough to be asked back a second time this month, and not only does she have a cute new bobbed hairstyle to show off, but lucky patrons can actually speak directly with her in a sound-cancelling booth, and have their photos taken with her.
No, I’m not vibrating with jealousy right now; why do you ask?

Asked “Do you have a boyfriend?” Minami answers, “No, I don’t because I’m a pop icon and am not allowed to have any.”
taken from this article

Hiroshi Ishiguro, creator of the Repliee/Actroid/Geminoid series of artificial humans, says that he hopes Minami can put in regular showings at Takashimaya, as he’d like to develop future displays for her there. I posit that he’s thinking small: instead of bringing her round to the store’s location every couple of months, why not just make more Actroids? Also, why just remain in Japan? Come to the States! Come to Michigan. The more the merrier, I say!

+ Finally, were you aware that I’d done another online interview? Well, you’re certainly more aware than you were five seconds ago. Journalist Britta Bowles had spotted the Missus and I on our first appearance on ‘My Strange Addiction’, and, like many people, had some hard-hitting questions she wanted to ask me. A two-hour chat over Skype last month had me divulging many untold secrets, the most shocking one being that Shi-chan writes all my lines; she’s created a personality for me, as I’m actually just a Doll. O, wait.

The one relationship he did attempt (if it can even be described as such) ended disastrously. Davecat befriended a woman just out of a bad relationship, and they eventually bought a house together. It seems like a story of unrequited love, with Davecat hoping the relationship would progress into something more than friendship over time. According to Davecat, he eventually discovered that this woman was a compulsive liar, a thief and a coke addict with a history of rehab stints. After the purchase of the house, arguments arose.

“We were getting into…debates, let’s say, once a week. I think this is partially because of the coke that she had coursing through her system,” Davecat tells me rather sardonically.

“I can’t imagine that arguments with cokeheads are very fun,” I reply.

“If you have the means, avoid them at all costs,” he tells me. I make a mental note never to interview a cokehead.

You can read the article in its entirety at Britta’s blog, ‘Selected writings’, here. Hopefully you’ll have as much fun reading it as we had conducting it…

And that’s it for May! Happy 23rd, and let’s see what we can discover next month, shall we?
‘Shouting to hear the echoes’: More Information About Synthetiks Than You Ever Though Possible. Believe it

Random similar posts, for more timewasting:

Any Synthetiks-related news, Davecat? (Feb 2007) on February 23rd, 2007

Any Synthetiks-related news, Davecat? (June 2011) on June 19th, 2011


Job upgrade: ACQUIRED / Springtime for Synthetiks / The practical application of Shinto

typed for your pleasure on 5 April 2013, at 8.52 pm

Sdtrk: ‘Russian snow queen’ by Fursaxa

Hello there! There’s been a bit of a sea change round here at Deafening silence Plus, and as change tends to throw me off, I’ve been growing to adjust to the new situation. That’s my latest excuse!
You recall that job I’d gotten, where I was Master of Data Entry? Well, that’s in the past, as of March. Eventually, the inevitable happened: I’d run out of data to enter. It’s funny; as I’d mentioned, the project was supposed to last until February 2013, but I performed my job with such wicked blinding efficiency that I’d had everything in the database by roughly the final week of December. Data entry master. As the place I was working at didn’t just want to chuck me out onto the street, they began training me to be on the phones, which filled me with a genuine sense of dread. Luckily, I managed to secure a better job at the beginning of March, where I’m now doing order entry at a local shop that manufactures drill bits and the like. It’s 10min from home, it doesn’t have me on the phone with slack-jawed cretins, and it’s the highest-paying job I’ve ever had, which will allow me to save up that much quicker for Doll No.3. So overall I’d say it’s a win!

The weather in SE Michigan is almost sort of slightly starting to kind of resemble something akin to Spring, so both Sidore and Elena wanted me to do a photoshoot with them when we got a nice warmer day. And that’s precisely what we did last Saturday, with the usual enjoyable results.

Lenka was more than happy to show off her new clothes, and the Missus was more than happy to show Lenka her foot massage skills; as she says, I taught her everything she knows. The downside was that I had to draw a line under it after five hours of posing, repositioning, and clicking, as I was knackered. Multiple Doll shoots take a lot more work than I thought they would!
Incidentally, that box on our coffee table next to Elena’s foot contains the as-yet-unassembled HRP-4C Miim kit that I’d ordered, so at some point, I’m going to have to build that…

And speaking — as always — of sexy robots, here’s this illuminating video from The Globe and Mail, wherein Aubrey Belford goes to Japan and interviews underrated genius Hiroshi Ishiguro.

Think of that as a teaser as to the next ‘Any Synthetik-related news…?’ post, cos you know there’s one coming! It’s been months, after all, and there’s loads of items to catch you lot up on

Random similar posts, for more timewasting:

Miss, your arm's ringing on February 3rd, 2007

Any Synthetiks-related news, Davecat? (Sept 05) on September 17th, 2005


Definitely pressing the right buttons

typed for your pleasure on 5 February 2013, at 12.04 am

Sdtrk: ‘Itsu akitsu’ by Merzbow

Did everyone enjoy Superb Owl XLVIVLMQ? Yes, I realise that referring to it as the Superb Owl has been done to death, but as long as there are Superbowls, I’ll keep using the term, so stick that up your jacksie. I spent the eve alternating between writing, and showing Sidore and Elena how badly things are turning out in my game of Dishonored, so really, it was just another Sunday for us. Of course, for those of us not too keen on the sport that should by rights be renamed Handegg, there’s always the onslaught of attention-grabbing adverts the corporations spend untold sums on to watch. As I haven’t watched broadcast telly in years — literally, I have no idea how to even bring up the regular channels on this thing; it’s not that pressing of an issue — if I’m bothered, I’ll catch some of the adverts on YouTube later on. Luckily, schmaislinn, one of my Twitter friends, let me know that this was aired this year:

It was only on my nineteenth viewing that I’d noticed there was a car in the advert! I think it was beige or something. But slinky twin Gynoids with panel lines and exposed machinery?? Kia, you have my undivided attention. All told, it kinda makes sense: Kia hails from the country that aims to have a robot in every home by 2020, and if they resemble that pair, they’ll be flying off the shelves. Curiously enough, there doesn’t seem to be anything on the Kia website that shows me where I can purchase one, cos Christ knows I’ve checked. Thoroughly.

Never would I have guessed in a million years that Synthetiks would make an appearance in unlikely an event as that! Truly, the Superb Owl has something for everyone

Random similar posts, for more timewasting:

And EveR-2 Muse makes two on October 18th, 2006

Any Synthetiks-related news, Davecat? (Mar 2007) on March 23rd, 2007


Any Synthetiks-related news, Davecat? (Feb 2013)

typed for your pleasure on 1 February 2013, at 12.04 am

Sdtrk: ‘Source are rare’ by Merzbow & Genesis P-Orridge

Originally this was slated for publication last month, but then Elena arrived, delaying everything by sexing up the place. This is what happens when you live with Synthetiks! Let this stand as a warning.

+ Anatomical Doll, the Russian company responsible for making Sidore’s girlfriend/my mistress, have recently unveiled two new heads, Christy and Anna.


Left: Christy; right: Anna. Incidentally, the Anna head seen here is being displayed on Ms Vostrikova’s body; you’ll recognise that dress

Christy adds a dash of Rihanna-tinged multi-ethnicity to your life, and fellow iDollator Everhard astutely mentioned that Anna’s soft and pillowy rubber lips reminded him of the mute sea princess Marina from Gerry Anderson’s programme Stingray. I’d only ever seen a single episode of Stingray, so to me, Anna resembled more of a brunette version of Lady Penelope Creighton-Ward, of Thunderbirds. It’s Gerry Anderson’s world; we only live in it.

+ AN EVENT I WISH I COULD ATTEND: On 05 February, The Japan Society of New York will be sponsoring a lecture featuring performance artist/roboticist Heather Knight, IEEE Spectrum editor Erico Guizzo, and Hiroshi Ishiguro, creator of the Actroid and Geminoid series of Synthetiks, entitled ‘How to Create Your Own Humanoid: Robot Science Made in Japan‘. Tickets are $12, $8 for Japan Society members, and the ticket price apparently includes a post-event reception with free wine.
*protracted sigh* Should anyone attend, be sure to let me know how it was!

+ Speaking of Making Your Very Own Humanoid Robots For Fun And Profit, if you have access to a 3D printer, French sculptor Gael Langevin has plans you can download to build InMoov, a work-in-progress robot. I’d say that’s a brilliant way to spend a number of week-ends…

The 3D printing doesn’t cover things such as cables, wires, or servos; you’ll have to purchase those separately. But once you add those, as well as a few Arduino microcontroller boards, as well as the appropriate software for voice commands, you’ll be the first kid on your block with an InMoov torso! Well, depending on where you live.
As I’d mentioned, Mr Lanegvin’s robot is a work in progress, so if you’re keen, download the free plans for what’s been finished from Thingiverse here, and keep an eye on his official project blog here, to see when he adds things like legs and further refinements to existing parts. All told, even with the parts you have to buy, a 3D printed robot is cheaper than a full kit!
Then when the torso’s complete, you might want to check Photogenic Mask for additional sexy cosmetic improvements. Just a suggestion.

+ If you’re an iDollator living in Japan, within (relative) driving distance of the northernmost island, you might want to look into the Doll photographer’s club Hokkaido. neji-san, the bloke behind Tsukuhami-san, tweeted this at Sidore recently:

Japan is in a rural location north of the park, for a life-size doll.
It says you can enjoy walks and photography is “Synthetik humans” and “Organik humans” in the WEB site of the park. Now closed down while buried in the snow. The period of May to October seems to be open. However, is very far from my house!


Karasu’s model Itsumi; photo taken September 2010

Unfortunately there’s no English on the site, but it seems like they’ve been around since 2006, enabling those with Synthetik models/companions to spend some time with them and like-minded individuals in the picturesque snowy mountains of Hokkaido. There, they’re free to take photographs out-of-doors, uninterrupted by the outside world. Sounds fantastic, to be honest!
The Doll-related online forum I’m a member of has an equivalent annual gathering called Dollstock, and due to expense/work-related nonsense, Shi-chan and I have missed it for three years running. *shakes head* Maybe we should work on getting to one of those first, before considering a drive to northernmost Japan…

+ Every now and again, I get asked by Organik lasses (and the occasional Organik bloke) if there are male Dolls, as they’re ‘asking for a friend’. Abyss creations have been making male RealDolls for quite some time, but now, Sinthetics is throwing their hat into the ring as well, with their new sturdy fellow, Gabriel. Your affictitious beefcake ship has come in.


‘Is it hot out here, or is it just me?’ No mate, it’s hot out there; you’re in the desert

Their Male Body 1, or M1, weighs 100 lbs, stands 5’9″ tall, and has a 35″ chest. Curiously enough, he wears the same size shoe as I do, at a US 10.5. Customers can also order him with varying degrees of punched hair for his chest, forearms, armpits and crotch, and you can choose from a variety of lengths and attachments for his wedding tackle. Why not stop round to Gabriel’s galleries, and see what this silicone gentleman has to offer?

+ ‘Body temperature’ is a new film directed by Takaomi Ogata, due out this month in Japan. Going by the trailer alone, it seems like a peculiar Japanese cross between ‘Lars and the Real Girl’ and ‘Love object’.

But Odhinn be praised, I just now located an official English website for the film. The synopsis?

Rintaro, a factory worker, happens to meet Rinko, a girl who has a split image of beloved Ibuki living with him. This encounter between Rintaro and a nightclub hostess turns out to heal their loneliness’. As they become closer in their relations, Rintaro gets frustrated by the fact that he never gets an exclusive attention from her. Rintaro dresses up Ibuki, changes her hair style, and puts her makeup on, calling her “Rinko”. Ibuki, who was called “Rinko” was actually a doll, a love doll, shaped just like a real female body.

The interesting thing you’d doubtless noticed in the trailer is that Rin Sakuragi plays both the Organik hostess Asuka, as well as the Synthetik Ibuki, so the film might get into some Satoshi Kon-like territory as to whether the lass we see in the wheelchair is Synthetik or Organik. Are we seeing real life, or what Rintaro is seeing?
Like I’d said, it looks to be interesting! At the very least, it can’t be worse than the patronising ‘Love object’…

+ In case you were mysteriously unaware, I’m constantly championing the idea of Synthetik partners; not just inert Dolls, but humanoid robots that possess machinery with which to move, and processing power with which to think. Right now, we have sexy examples such as HRP-4C or Hiroshi Ishiguro’s aforementioned creations, but we’ll soon reach a point where those artificial humans will be viewed the same way those of us who drive in 2013 view cars from the Forties and Fifties — well-intentioned, but sorely lacking. The more realistic the Synthetiks of tomorrow look, feel, think, and behave brings up interesting moral questions, some of which are touched upon in the article ‘I’m Just a Love Machine: Artifice and Consent in the Age of Robotics‘, by Jamais Cascio:

At minimum, critics claim, the presence of sex bots would begin to alter expectations for how members of the appropriate sex would look and behave. This follows from similar arguments about how present-day popular culture shape desires, often through images manipulated to portray an almost inhuman level of attractiveness—only now, this once unattainable beauty has an entirely attainable physical form. Even more troubling for critics, sex bots are inherently willing to do whatever a person may want; real mates would never be as agreeable and as submissive to one’s desires as a machine you programmed yourself.

In these fearful scenarios, the appeal of human sexual partners can do nothing but wither in comparison to the lust-made-”flesh” of a sex bot. The inevitable result of people foregoing real relationships in favor of perfect (but non-reproducing) partners is, of course, the End of Civilization. It’s as if these critics see sex as the only driver for human relationships, and are all-too-ready to abandon any other form of intimate connection. Fortunately, there are strong drivers for bonding that go beyond physical coupling.

But even if the critics exaggerate the possibility of a “sex bot apocalypse,” there is a more subtle cultural complication that would arise along with LoveMakerBots. Our fundamental laws and norms around sex come down to consent: entities that are incapable of giving true consent are off-limits. A robot can be programmed to be constantly willing, but—absent the emergence of self-aware artificial intelligence—cannot be programmed to give true consent. This isn’t something many of us worry about when it comes to, say, vibrators, but when the design of the robot elicits an empathic, emotional reaction, intentionally or otherwise, an inability to give consent may for some move unexpectedly from irrelevant to deeply disturbing.
the entire article is here

This would be the elephant in the room that I personally have difficulty addressing. The robotic elephant. A lot of iDollators and technosexuals such as myself desire the affictitious partners we do because we want someone that will always remain faithful, and is utterly incapable of treachery. A Gynoid version of Sidore would have her own programmes resembling thought and independence, but would not want any other partner but me, other Gynoids excluded. In short, she’d have the capability of leaving me, but she never would. Some would argue that programming an artificial lifeform in that manner is just slavery by another name, but I’m not so sure. Now, although I treat Shi-chan and Lenka with the same amount of love and tenderness that I would if they were devoted Organik partners — moreso, some might say — there are people out there whose main purpose for obtaining a Synthetik would be to subject them to abuse, and would defend their behaviour with statements like ‘they act like they feel what I do to them, but it’s just pre-programmed responses. They’re things… they just look like people.’
Is it better to have a Synthetik partner and treat her or him with love, while simultaneously preventing her from having completely free will which might result in her leaving? Or should Organiks ignore the human-like appearance and behaviour of Synthetiks, and simply treat them like objects? I’d say Yes to the former and No to the latter, but then, I follow David Levy’s line of thought: ‘If a robot appears in every way to possess consciousness, then in my opinion, we should accept that it does’. Thankfully, robotics ethics committees are working on getting a handle on these sticky issues now before they become genuine problems. At the time of this writing, I’ve just found a fascinating article: it details a scientific study about how people might be more easily ‘tricked’ into caring for a robot, but we’ll leave it for another time.

+ Last, and on a much less philosophical bent, we close out this month’s installment with a link to the site Incredoll. Ergh, I meant Incredidoll. Every time I type that, I have to check the spelling. The site is so named as the maintainer is Incrediwagon, a fellow iDollator who I’ve known for several years. He and his partner-in-crime Campdaan have an army of gorgeous silicone beauties that they live with, and now, their galleries are available for perusal. Believe me, between extensive and amazing photoshoots of Ceilidh, Dottie, Jayde, Vicki, Myfanwy, and the rest, you might want to look into freeing up some more hard drive space.


Yuri and Dottie share a quiet moment together before DEBAUCHERY

As you may note, the site’s been added to the infamous sidebar links section, in the ‘Synthetik friends & friends of Synthetiks’ section, so you can check it over and over and over. And why wouldn’t you?

*dusts off hands* There; that should keep you lot occupied for a few days

Random similar posts, for more timewasting:

Any Synthetiks-related news, Davecat? (Sept 2011) on September 18th, 2011

Any Synthetiks-related news, Davecat? (May 2013): Part II on May 23rd, 2013


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