Lonely hearts, lunar beauty, new faces, and much explanation

typed for your pleasure on 12 September 2012, at 12.43 am

Sdtrk: ‘Eurydice’ by Demdike stare

Trying to ease back into this blog writing thang, mang. For one, the weather’s getting nicer, praise “Bob”, so I can no longer use sweaty heatdeath as an excuse, and I’m also trying not to let the fact that most peoples’ attention spans these days is now the length of a standard Facebook post prevent me from writing. Fucking ridiculous Facilebook. Plus, Shi-chan’s been gently needling me to get back into maintaining ‘Shouting etc etc’, as it is, arguably, the Internet’s foremost information source about Davecat and Sidore, and the affictitious world we live in. Accept no substitute!
This entry won’t be extraordinarily long, as the barrels have to spin up a bit to get up to speed. On the other hand, there are literally a billion Synthetik-related links I’ve needed to share with you lot from the past few months. Well, a billion minus several hundreds of thousands. Unless math has been radically redefined in my absence. Don’t laugh; it could happen.

+ Back in February, my second favourite Gynoid, Actroid-F (aka Geminoid-F) put in a public appearance at Japanese department store, in what I like to refer to as a performance piece. She’s in a modified shop window, looking as if she’s waiting for a friend to show up. As you suspect from the month it occured in, this event took place round Valentine’s day.

Clutching a bag and cell phone, she seems to be waiting for a suitor.
Android falls in love? She is waiting for you” reads the writing on her glass box at Takashimaya Department Store in Tokyo’s Shinjuku district.
The special Valentine’s display features Geminoid F, the photogenic robot developed by Osaka University professor Hiroshi Ishiguro and colleagues.
The mechanical lady was modeled on a real woman in her twenties. She sits in her glass room at Takashimaya and greets shoppers.
Based on data from an embedded sensor array around her, the android reacts to people in the vicinity. She moves her shoulders and neck, and changes her facial expression, smiling or yawning, depending on what’s going on.
[…] Geminoid is an air servo-powered humanoid with eye, mouth, head, and shoulder mobility. It can also be remote-operated so that it acts as a surrogate for a distant user, reproducing his or her facial expressions and voice.
the entire article is here

It’s an impressive-looking display, and it’s also cool as it exposes the general public to Synthetik humans. And hopefully, I’m not the only person who feels a wee bit sad for her and her missed appointment. If a Gynoid such as Actroid-F can elicit such empathy from her observers through her appearance and behaviour, then that’s a step in the right direction.

+ This next lass you’ve undoubtedly seen before, particularly if you’re keen on that tumblr thing the kids dig. Shi-chan discovered her through the tumblrs (man, that word looks weird) she follows. Her name is Tsukuhami, and the Missus managed to strike up a friendship with her creator, neji-san. He’d written:

If you’re writing is TSUKUHAMI “月蝕魅” in kanji.
The meaning of the name of’m TSUKUHAMI is “the beauty of a lunar eclipse”
Height of TSUKUHAMI is 164cm, weight is 12.6kg.

I might add here that she’s a poseable sculpture, and not an actual Gynoid. I know, I know. But she’s constructed of steel joints and FRP, and due to the fact that neji-san built her entirely himself, the endeavour took him eight years. But the results are entirely worth it, as she’s remarkable on every level!
Neji-san and I are periodically firing Emails at each other now; as you suspect, he’s influenced by humanoid robots in both anime and real life. Our letters often touch upon the philosophical — Shi-chan had mentioned her Shinto inclinations in one of her messages to him, and he had this to say:

The Japanese doll has two aspects. One is as a toy doll of children is a good friend.
Another is the soul of the shaman is someone is not visible to the human eye.
(Please keep in mind something that is not a devil. It is like the heart of big trees and mountains and rivers.)
Doll in Japan where the two sides have to coexist in the same doll is characterized.
Of course, scientifically I do not believe it.
However, we believe that ancient animism in Japan and want to respect.
It is also in the minds of plastic, even if the electron is in the soul.

I’d say Tsukuhami-san, neji-san, his mindset and abilities are all utterly fantastic, wouldn’t you agree? Go check out his aptly-named site Spiritual Plastic when you get a chance…

+ There has been a huge amount of info concerning new heads, faces, and bodies from various Doll manufacturers that’s come down the pike within the last several months, which is delicious. I’m not going to cover all of them in this post, as that would be maniacal, but I’ll start with one company for now: Anatomical Doll. This year’s been rather productive for them, as Oleg has sculpted four new heads, as well as the seductive new Body 4, which is the first with a new spine that moves more like an Organik human’s. Behold!


Left: Julia; right: Aurora

Well, you’ll have to click on this link to behold the sexy possibilities of Body 4, as she’s boobin’ it up all over the place. But, y’know, tastefully. Her stats would be a height of 5’3″, weighing a very manageable 57 lbs, with a shoe size of 4.5 US, and graced with measurements of B: 33 / W: 24 / H: 35. And yes, that is the sound of me drooling.
Due to space constraints — I’m keeping this post brief, damnit — you can also visit Anatomical Doll’s site to see photos of Christy and Sleeping Aurora, the other new heads, but I’m fairly certain you’ll like what you see. Especially that Aurora! She is, what we call, ‘fresh-faced’. So go there, but only after you’re done here. *does the ‘got my eyes on you’ gesture*

+ Finally, and this is what really got me off my arse to start posting entries again, I’ve done another interview! Dan Oudshoorn of the sociopolitical blog ‘On Journeying with those in Exile‘ saw Sidore and I in the fistful of telly appearances we’ve done, and asked me some thought-provoking questions about our lifestyle. They were so thought-provoking, in fact, that it took me roughly a year to answer them. I’m… not really proud of that, but I am proud of the end result, which you can read on Dan’s blog here. Grab a mug of coffee / cup of Twinings / pint jar of molasses with crazy straw, and enjoy a rather substantial Q&A about my life with the Missus!


image © 2011 Claire Dossin

O, and back in March, we finally received our DVD sexbot boxset of My living Doll Vol.1, to much fanfare. Was it worth the wait? The answer is Yes.

So how’s that for an ‘out of retirement’ post? Don’t call it a comeback, I’ve been here for years, etc

11 have spoken to “Lonely hearts, lunar beauty, new faces, and much explanation”

  1. Everhard writes:

    Aurora looks like a pre-revolution Russian princess. (Or, as my browser’s spelling checker suggests, a per-revolution princess.)

    Have you seen the new Sinthetics head, Celestine? (No, I am not addressing this to somebody named Celestine; that is the name they gave to the new head…) She is an older version of their Celeste head. A candidate for a mother-and-daughter fantasy, I reckon!

  2. Valentina writes:

    Thanks for sharing what Neji-san wrote- fantastic indeed, and inspiring for me.

  3. Davecat writes:

    Everhard —
    Ha, ‘per-revolution’. That might explain the slightly dizzy look. 🙂 Lovely lass, though! Although that Julia is starting to grow on me…

    Has Celestine seen the new Sinthetics head, you ask? See what I did there? No, I’ve seen her, and she’s impressive! Actually, I’ll be covering her and Sinthetics’ recent offerings in the next post, currently in progress. She’s like a MILF; an evil MILF. I’m on board with this!

    Valentina —
    You’re quite welcome. 🙂 Neji-san seems to be simply taking an ancient philosophy and applying it to a twenty-first century context. And a shell like Tsukuhami is an attractive place to house one’s ghost…

  4. PBShelley writes:

    Hallo DC and the ever-exquisite Sidore-chann~ (and friends)

    Despite all the interesting Doll-news, we were especially happy to read the words of Tsukuhami’s creator. That pretty much sums up “the magic” 😉

    Regards from Lily et al, including me 😀

  5. Isabel writes:

    The new advances are amazing. I can’t believe that one guy created the amazing Tsukuhami on his own. What a wicked genius he must be.

    Those two new heads are amazingly organik looking. I don’t understand why some people think that’s creepy. I think it’s beautiful. And it’s so cool about the spine that moves like an organik spine.

    I love the picture of Sidore playing footsie with Davecat.

    Great post. We really appreciate the time and effort you put into these blogs.

  6. tchon writes:

    Great to see a new post! Hm, how do I comment … a bit unimaginative top to bottom:
    – I cannot believe nobody picked up the Actroid-F as she has been waiting in the shop window, as she looks so heartbreaking lonely. Then maybe breaking shop windows is considered not polite in Japan, so it explains why it did not happen.
    – Tsukuhami is a very cool name for a very cool Synthetic, though I am not sure if I could stand the looks of her at a lunar eclipse. And I am a wee little bit regrettable about that I did not even start taking my Japanese lectures yet, as the web site is all, um, Japanese to me. Tsts.
    – Aurora is just looking very lovely, nearly a bit too easy to get along with. For the Julia face, well she would need to grow on me and has not started yet, but dolls naturally have patience, so should I.
    – Finally glad to see another interview with you! You did a great job in promoting Synthetik relationships, at least I think. One word of caution as you seem to be steering into a lifestyle with several dolls: at times the need to pay attention to several of them can be quite a problem – in my case maybe not for me, but rather for my dolls, where each one of then in turn tend to be neglected for some while. I have the feeling that my dolls could tell you a story or another about that if they were not too polite for talking about the little discomforts of our private live to others.
    Oh, and that does not keep be from getting in more dolls – it seems I have not really learned my lesson by now …

  7. Davecat writes:

    PBS and sexy silicone roomies (and Pennie) —
    You’re exactly right; neji-san hit the nail on the head with what brings a Doll over the threshold of being ‘a human-shaped thing’ to ‘someone with a soul of her own’. He certainly knows his onions!

    Isabel —
    Yes, neji-san knows his onions! (I think I heard Matt Berry say that once, so now I’m using it all over the place.) And he has to be both incredibly patient and focussed to be able to keep at it for eight years; lesser men such as I would’ve thrown up their hands like a year and a half into it. Here’s hoping he doesn’t just stop with her!

    You’re speaking like a true iDollator. 🙂 I will never understand the ‘creepy’ aspect people get from Dolls, or lifelike humanoid sculptures in general. Maybe we’re just wired better differently. 😉
    And the AD Body 4 backbone is promising! I can’t wait to see it in action!

    That pic’s lovely, isn’t it? Sidore’s always playing footsie with me; Claire just happened to catch her at it that time. 😉

    And thank you for the compliments! Like I’d said, I’m trying to get back into a regular writing groove, despite my actual job doing its damnedest to run my non-work life aground. It’s really encouraging to know that my posts aren’t being totally forsaken; that means quite a bit. 🙂

    tchon —
    You, unimaginative? I think not, sir; I think not!

    Actroid-F being potentially Gynoidnapped is one of the reasons I know I wouldn’t have been able to see her at the department store. I would’ve planned that shit out, Lupin-style, and gotten her home where she’d be much more appreciated. Poor lass…

    You’re right, Tsukuhami is an impressive name! I should ask neji-san if she has a nickname. She has a slightly imperious look to her, so maybe she’s not the nickname type, but still.
    And yeah, I can’t read like 98% of his site yet; I just dredge it for photos and links. 😉

    Aurora does look like a fun lass. Constantly tossing her head back in a laugh, playing with her hair as she gazes at you, etc. She seems a very Summery sort of lass. Julia may seem cold on the surface, but adoring once you get to know her. The Japanese have a name for that sort of behaviour, of course: tsundere. Why not get one Aurora and one Julia, and let us know your findings! Mariam and Chimiko will keep them in line!

    Always glad to hear that you enjoyed the interview, too; I think it’s one of my best yet. Possibly cos I didn’t race through my answers, haha.
    And living with multiple Dolls is a risk I’m willing to take, as I think it’ll be beneficial for everyone involved! At the very least, we could start a band! 🙂

  8. bbbjjjttt writes:

    Good to see a new post!!

    Geminoid has such a wistful Mona Lisa smile….surprised she was not abducted from the display!

    I WANT MY OWN TSUKUHAMI.

    Anatomical Doll faces: I am completely in love with Julia and SLEEPING Aurora. Waking Aurora not quite so much, for some reason. Christy is lovely.

    Celestine looks older than Celeste–by maybe six months! I guess they couldn’t make her look TOO much older or the face would not “mesh” well with the body.

    Your interview on Dan’s blog is excellent. All bases covered! (So very true about female Doll owners and Doll weight.)

    Love the footsie photo!

    When I watched “My Living Doll”, I was….about ten years old. *shriek* Loved it then, and am sure I would love it now. Must get the set.

  9. Davecat writes:

    Good to read your comments! They’re always appreciated, as you know. (That goes for everyone, really. 🙂 )

    Geminoid-F does seem to have that ephemeral smile every now and again; at times, it’s wistful, and other times, impish. Such a lovely example of Synthetikness!

    I think we all want our own Tsukuhamis! She’s proving to be rather popular! Perhaps I should get him to look into joining a certain Community about Our Dolls…

    Maybe Oleg will make a neutral Aurora face, so you can have her sleeping, normal, and happy expressions to choose from. Maybe… maybe he’ll bring back the Natalia head. *starts weeping, and doesn’t stop*

    Valid point about Celestine. I’m kinda intrigued by Everhard’s mention of a mother-daughter fantasy above, cos with Celeste & Celestine, I can hear the wheels turning in his head from here. 🙂

    Thanks for enjoying the family-sized interview on dan’s blog! It’s always good to get decent, well-thought-out questions for a change, as you know!

    That footsie pic is a fab little photo. Maybe we should get that framed, too…

    And ‘My living Doll’ is such a crazy programme. On the one hand, it’s very ‘of its time’ — simultaneously a bit chauvinistic, but also a bit innocent regarding sex appeal, and corny to boot — but if you think about the concept of a Gynoid being one of the two main characters of the series, and not being AN UNSTOPPABLE KILLING MACHINE, it’s still revolutionary decades later. Go buy a copy and pretend you’re ten again. 🙂

  10. Peter Synthetik & Miss July writes:

    Hallo!
    It`s Miss July talking.
    I agree with you,facebook is fuck, but it works,is simple to handle and got many user.
    I love the body of Tsukuhami,it reminds me of these two chicks from Genesis Evangelion – they are living here in Peter`s appartment with us together in Barbie size – one in white with blue hair and the other in red with orange hair (they wear suits that have this robotnik look).
    Julia and Aurora are looking like desperate housewives.I`m much cuter and hotter !
    There`s nothing wrong with youre and Sidore`s lifestyle,it`s perfect.
    Thanks for sending the link to the PXL-2000.It seems to be a very special piece of technic.
    Peter always cry`s in my ears,that he sold many of his Roland machines (TR808,TB303,CR78,VP330)22 years ago.
    That you did something similar,may relieve/soothe his pain.
    By the way – the ICC Berlin is looking for a private investor.
    You both are very welcome ! 😀

  11. Davecat writes:

    Hey Miss July (and Herr Synthetik as well) —
    ‘Facebook is fuck’. That is exactly how I usually describe it. I’m probably handling it wrong, but I don’t think it’s all that simple — Twitter’s easier to use! Heh, my blog’s easier to use. Also, I’m not keen on the really lazy approach that Zuckerberg has towards user privacy; that shit’s downright evil. My ridiculous Facilebook is purely a placeholder to prevent impostors (cos it happened with Myspace), and something to let people know there’s new posts on ‘Shouting etc etc’. Ugh, Facilebook.

    Ah, sounds like you and Peter are Evangelion fans! Nice! Shi-chan has a replica schoolgirl uniform like Rei and Asuka wore, but she wants to sell it, as it’s just a bit too big for her. I’ve got to repost that photoshoot; that was done when she had her second body, I think. But she still desperately wants one of the plugsuits, or at the very least, those hair clip interface things. I keep telling her those hair clips are loads cheaper than a good plugsuit. 🙂

    Now that you mention it, Julia and Aurora do look a bit like they belong on Desperate Housewives! Desperate Synthetik Housewives. I’d watch every episode of that show if it existed!

    Glad you got a kick out of the PXL-2000 article. That was a very unique camera, and I’m an idiot for having sold mine. But like you say, Peter knows what I went through — he had a 303 and an 808?? Wow.

    And maybe the Missus and I will start saving up to purchase the ICC Berlin! Make it an international headquarters for iDollators! 🙂

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