Any Synthetiks-related news, Davecat? (Feb 2011)

typed for your pleasure on 23 February 2011, at 12.29 am

Sdtrk: ‘Hard lovin’ man’ by Merzbow

A new year, bringing with it a handful of links concerning Synthetiks, for those of you with bated breath! Which is all of you, right?

+ It always blows peoples’ minds when they learn about contemporary Gynoids, Androids, and the like, but when I read about their predecessors, it explodes my own brain in slow-motion. Not necessarily ones as far back the 18th and 19th centuries, where automata such as the wonderful creations of Pierre and Henri-Louis Jaquet-Droz held sway — although those are very cool — but all the ones in between then and now. Like Courtenay Pollock’s little-known and ominously-named ‘She’, for instance, detailed here in a June 1934 issue of Modern Mechanix!


Definitely better-looking with skin. But you can say that about most people, really

Animated Statue Smiles and Displays Her Dimples

ALMOST human is “SHE,” work of Courtenay Pollock, well known sculptor of London. With the aid of a small electric motor, “SHE” is smiling, coy, demure, or scornful as her master wills. Rolling her eyes about in an enchanting manner, she even displays a lovely set of dimples.

This “living” model is on display in one of the leading department stores of London. A cordon of police are required to keep the crowd moving and traffic clear in the streets.

The skull is made up of hinged sections, each of which are controlled separately through levers and switches. Gears and levers connect each part to the driving motor.

When a tinted rubber covering is slipped over the “skull,” eyebrows and hair attached, and a bit of cosmetics applied, “SHE” is transformed into a beautiful, vivacious young lady.

This first animated statue may herald a new era in sculpturing. It is not too much to expect that in a few years the works of our sculptors will all take on life—will frolic about and speak, imitating in every way the persons who posed as models.

Despite the “fact” the “writer” went “crazy” with the “inverted commas”, that’s still a “hell” of a “thing” to have witnessed, either then or now. Shame that the prediction of animated statues being everywhere didn’t come true, though. Or is that sort of thing simply just now starting?
The whereabouts of ‘She’ are presently unknown, and I’m fairly certain her rubber flesh corroded long ago. Still! Now that you lot know what her uncovered bust looks like, keep an eye out for her, eh?

+ So in doing a wee bit more Synthetiks research — also known as ‘screwing round on the Innernets’ — I think I found the predecessor to ‘She’, in the form of a very curious machine known as the Euphonia, which would fall into the category of one of those wonderful creations from the 18th and 19th centuries…


An old photo, taken with a 1 megapixel camera

Joseph Faber’s “Euphonia” was both a response to the telegraph and a remediation of it. He imagined a telegraph that could speak, leading him to construct a model of the human speech organs. Faber studied language and human vocal anatomy in order to break them down into parts and then reorganize them mechanically. The Euphonia operated by “By pumping air with the bellows and using different combinations of 16 keys to manipulate a series of plates, chambers, and other apparatus including an artificial tongue (Levy 29).” The false head black boxes and masks the mechanics of the vocal process. Faber created an artificial organ through which artificial speech could be achieved. The artificial organ of speech is doubled by the machine as musical organ and an extension of the silent organ that is Faber’s own vocal tract.
taken from this site

Apparently it (she?) spoke in a slightly German accent, even when speaking in English — undoubtedly due to the fact that Faber was a German immigrant — with a voice that was described as ‘a weird, ghostly monotone’. That may have been true, but keep in mind, people were more easily-spooked back in the 19th century.
The Euphonia is quite fascinating, cos it’s not really a Gynoid, despite its feminine appearance, and it’s not so much a robot or an automata; it’s more like a webcam decades before webs or cams existed. One one hand, Faber succeeded in his attempt to put a human face to a voice; however, Euphonia would’ve had everyone that contacted you through it both look and sound like bodiless German Gynoids. *thinks* Maybe that wasn’t such a failed effort after all, then.
Something I’d found amusing on that linguistics site linked above was a bit that mentioned

The mastery of the machine is limited by the selections already built into the design as it was not for example, designed to scream. It’s possible that a screaming effect could have been achieved by hacking the machine and manipulating the pedals, which control pitch, but no such instance was ever recorded.

Which, as far as I’m concerned, was an opportunity wasted.

+ Speaking of affictitious heads, the fine people of Vladivostok’s Anatomical Doll have recently released another head sculpt, available for all three of their Doll bodies. This lovely young rubber lass is named Eco, which leads me to ask: is ‘Eco’ the Russian word for ‘fox’? Cos, I mean, hmmm.


ATTENTION PB SHELLEY: Start your Eco fund RIGHT NOW

Reproduce scenes from ‘Jennifer’s body’ in your very own home! Or, if you’re a true masochist, scenes from Michael Bay’s ‘Transformers’! Err, I take that last suggestion back; no-one, Organik or Synthetik, should have to put up with Bayformers. Please, don’t taint your Eco.

+ Let another diminutive silicone woman into your heart, life, and pants with the Wicked RealDoll version of Lupe Fuentes!


Photo by Stacy Leigh

Much like her Organik twin, she features a 30B cup, a 20in waist, and 31.5 hips, with an appealing size 5 shoe. Unlike her Organik twin, however, she clocks in at a dainty +/- 60lbs, which is remarkable. A Doll that light could ride you like a stallion! Ahem!

+ And finally, remember how I’d mentioned last November how Californian company Sinthetics was gearing up to release New Silicone Sexiness upon the world? Well, perhaps you should give their site a look now, if you haven’t already. Or would seeing more of this sort of thing convince you?


Tawny, looking like a much more attractive Tori Spelling


Celeste, about to say ‘No, Mr Bond, I expect you to die!’ again

If you answered More Of This Sort Of Thing, you answered correctly! I’d show you photos of their other two models, Alicia and Monique, but you’ve been spoilt enough as it is. Plus, they’re usually topless. JESUS COME BACK AND AT LEAST READ THE REST OF THE POST, YOU ANIMALS.
Interestingly enough, Sinthetics (man, gotta get used to typing it using that spelling) don’t call their affictitious ladies Dolls, but instead refer to them as manikins. As they explain on their site,

Often people like to pigeon-hole things like products or groups of people. We feel that our products reach much farther than the mainstream understanding of a “love doll” and therefore we recognize the art in our products and call them manikins.

Gotta say that I like the way they’re approaching things… Their incredibly delectable Female Body 1H weighs around 73lb, wears a sz 7 or 8 shoe, and boasts measurements of 32G (‘closest commercially available bra size, actual bra size 28H’, they say), a waist of 23in, and 31in hips. If you’re like me, your mind has come to a complete halt due to this knowledge. Not only that, but for an additional $300, they also offer a low-voltage built-in heating system situated in her abdomen, much like the ones found in some Anatomical Dolls. And did I mention their manikins feature a flexible spine for forward, backward, and side-to-side hip motion? Yes.
So if, later on in the year, you find yourself with a Sinthetic in your home and you can’t get anything done, don’t blame her; that’s the coward’s response.

You may now feel free, at this point, to unbate your breath. Until next month, of course!

Random similar posts, for more timewasting:

Distracted, or, I clearly need more Doll news to report on on December 14th, 2005

'More human than human', after a fashion on June 21st, 2006


Phil and his short-term memory loss / A stunning likeness!

typed for your pleasure on 3 February 2011, at 2.24 am

Sdtrk: ‘586’ by New order

Thanks to the appearance that the Missus and I put in on the TLC programme ‘My Strange Addiction’ back on 26 January, I’d suggest that we’ve received a wee bit of attention. One of which was another Email enquiry from a chat show host! Can you guess who it was? Wrong! It was on behalf of Dr Phil! That’s right, again!

from: Mason, Keya
to: pulsedemon [at] gmail.com
date: Fri, Jan 28, 2011 at 3:25 PM
subject: Dr. Phil Show

Hi Davecat,

I’m writing you to express our interest in having you as a guest on the Dr. Phil Show. We would love to possibly tape an episode with you Mid-February. Please give me a call as soon as you can at [phone number]

Keya Mason
Dr. Phil – Associate Producer
Mae West Building
5555 Melrose Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90038

I find it absolutely stunning the way these contemporary media-types work, and I mean ‘stunning’ in the sense that ‘they have brought my brain to a complete halt’. They are like sharks, or jackals. Something, some thing excites their senses, and they waste no time in springing into action. They may not know exactly what it is, but they act instinctively, without any deliberation. Any time wasted reduces the chances of gaining the coveted. And so they spring to the laptops; or rather, they have their associate producers do the springing. These are modernised jackals.
So I sprung into action myself, as we have no associate producer round here:

from: pulsedemon [at] gmail.com
to: “Mason, Keya”
date: Fri, Jan 28, 2011 at 7:37 PM
subject: Re: Dr. Phil Show

Hey Keya –

Thanks for your enquiry! I’ve no idea how closely your staff coordinates with each other, but one of your number had already asked me about making an appearance back in 2007. Observe: http://www.kuroneko-chan.com/echoes/?p=547.
My answer hasn’t changed, but thanks for the opportunity!

Cheers,
Davecat

I guess I managed to stop Hitler at Munich, as Keya wrote back that if I ever decide to change my mind, I have her number. But of course. *nods slowly*

And thanks to the appearance that the Missus and I put in on the TLC programme ‘My Strange Addiction’ back on 26 January, I’d suggest that we’ve received a wee bit of attention. One of which was a lovely Email from one half of a couple who’d seen our ep several times. Which, I imagine, would be rather like Purgatory: you’ve got a television, but you can only watch the same episode of the same programme over and over, for the rest of eternity. Don’t rule it out, it could happen!
At any rate, the writer, who I’ll refer to as K-chan, said they enjoyed us enough that she fired off a beautiful illustration that she did of the Missus, as seen below.

Isn’t that awesome? Sidore fanart. K-chan’s managed to capture her curious-yet-sarky nature, we think. We’ve reached some sort of awesome plateau! Thanks, K-chan!
Shi-chan wants me to print it up on good quality paper, so we can hang it on a wall. I’d say that’s a pretty good idea

Random similar posts, for more timewasting:

Circus Minimus: supplemental on November 1st, 2007

What's been up, buttercup? / Circus Minimus: The other Big O on April 28th, 2011