Any Synthetiks-related news, Davecat? (Aug 2008)

typed for your pleasure on 4 August 2008, at 5.34 pm

Sdtrk: ‘Did you expect the gods to tread lightly when they came among you’ by Caldera lakes

We have a metric ton of news to cover in this month’s instalment. A ton. Ready GO!

You’ve probably seen this already, but Kokoro Co. Ltd.’s winsome Actroid DER2-chan made her media debut recently; she was in an advert for an insect repellent/sunscreen spray for the Japanese manufacturer Kincho.

Titled “The Woman Who Doesn’t Rust,” the 15-second commercial spot shows Actroid outdoors at a campground, where she recommends using Preshower because, as a female, her skin is important. After a few squirts of the spray, she cheerily adds, “Surprisingly, I don’t rust.”
taken from Pink Tentacle

Her voice. It’s so cute.
Today, a 15-second telly advert; tomorrow, a major part in a feature film! Well done, babe!

Speaking of Gynoids, some bloke in Japan is trying his hand at building one himself. His project is called Maidroid, which immediately identifies two target markets he’s aiming for.


She won’t be a very good maid with only one arm

Of course, everything on his site is in Japanese, and I don’t have the kind of patience to Babelfish the entire page, so just do what I do — visit it, scroll towards the bottom, click on some links, stare at the pics, watch the videos, and nod approvingly.

This one submitted by la Gina Banina: the Art of Alex Sandwell Kliszynski. He’s got a theme going, much in the style of Mario A., Juergen Specht, and Low Tek Photography, as you’ll soon note.


Five points of articulation. That’s four more than a McFarlane figure

There’s not a tremendous amount of photos in the gallery, so hopefully Mr Kliszynski has more out there that he’s just not displayed on his site yet…

Speaking of Doll art, you know (sexy) fellow iDollator Stacy Leigh‘s photos of her gorgeous silicone roomies have been shown in another publication, right? This time round, she was interviewed for the July/August issue of Park, a French magazine (scroll to the bottom for the article). They gave her eight pages! Rock on, missy!

Speaking of print magazines, on domestic shores, the August issue of Penthouse features a very even-handed four-page write-up on Real-Dolls (needed another hyphen there), which means you can actually say you’re reading it for the articles… Better hurry up and grab it, cos you know how it is with print — it’s always one month ahead, and since it’s August as we speak, all the August issues out will magickally turn into September issues in a couple of days.

Speaking of August, Phoenix Studios once again meets another deadline! I’ve always loathed August for its excessive heat and humidity; thankfully, Miss August doesn’t reflect those qualities at all. And good on her.


And why would I be attracted to her? She looks
nothing at all like the Missus!

For a couple of seconds, I was kinda confused as to what seasonal event she was supposed to represent, until I twigged it — she’s dressed as a schoolgirl. School (in the States) starts in late August. Ah haaah. Very clever, Phoenix Studios; very clevair.

Speaking of seasons, Boy Toys in and of themselves look fab enough, but Phoenix Studios are pulling another innovation out of their hat(s) with the Boy Toy Seasons line, featuring Summer, Autumn, and Winter, and Spring. These lasses are super-limited edition (only fifty of each will be made), but on top of that, their faces fall in between the stylised qualities of the regular Boy Toy line, and the realistic look of regular RealDolls. Huh!


It’s Summer time (not to be confused
with ‘Hammer time’)

Aaand finally, blindly groping my way through Google, I spotted a website for an indie film entitled ‘Rubberheart‘.

It’s Tuesday and Maggie (Rebecca Hall) is on the prowl at her local hunting ground, the video store. Hapless video nerd Ted (Jake Sandvig) tries, as always, to curry favor with Maggie, but she needs more intrigue. She needs more of a man. Enter Nick (Josh Cooke). Maggie courts Nick while browsing the Tinto Brass collection. They go to Maggie’s to watch Salon Kitty and make love on the couch.

The morning after, Maggie wakes without the usual sense of dread that comes with a hangover and making small talk with a stranger who you’ve had mediocre sex with. They agree to see each other again.

After a few weeks of renting films and watching them at Maggie’s place until carnal pleasure interrupts, Nick invites Maggie to dinner at his house. When Maggie arrives, Nick has something to share…something that takes Maggie completely by surprise.

SPOILERS: He’s got three lovely RealDolls. Well, it’s not much of a spoiler, really; I mean, why else would I be writing about it?
I’ve contacted the director, Brian Crano, in an attempt to procure a copy of the film for review. It’s actually making the film festival rounds — it’s due to be shown at the Canary Wharf Film Festival later this month. Full details are, of course, available on the film’s site, so if you catch it, let me know! Well, let Brian know too, as I’m sure he’d appreciate it.

Whoo! That… was a lot of news in one go. I think I need a Djarum

Technorati tags: Kokoro Co. Ltd., Actroid, Kincho, Maidroid, Android, Gynoid, robots, Alex Sandwell Kliszynski, Stacy Leigh, Park Mag, Penthouse Magazine, Phoenix Studios, Boy Toy, Rubberheart, Brian Crano, RealDolls

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Art imitating life imitating art

typed for your pleasure on 6 April 2008, at 11.29 am

Sdtrk: ‘I want to be old’ by the Cure

Well, this is certainly innaresting, as Uncle Bill used to say. It seems robotics manufacturing firm Kokoro Co. Ltd haven’t been resting on their laurels at all, cos hot on the heels of Simroid-chan would be their latest charming Gynoid, Holon.


Rain and snow just roll right off her head!

Now, there’s a reason for her anime-styled face: Holon-chan is a character in an upcoming anime series by Production I.G entitled ‘Real Drive‘, another one of those cyberpunk-styled series that Masamune Shirow is responsible for. In the series, she plays a secretary. Which is an interesting coincidence, as the real-life Holon-chan will ideally be put to use as… a secretary.


Her legs are designed to attract Robert Crumb

Personally, I’m not too keen on her plastic hair — what, the Kokoro staffers couldn’t cut a wig to look like the anime version’s hair? Plus her anime face will invite comparisons such as Holon is to Actroid, as a CandyGirl is to a RealDoll. But upon reflection, that’s okay. Cos not only are Kokoro and Production I.G embarking hand-in-hand on a pretty impressive marketing ploy, but I’ve always said that there’s a niche for Synthetiks with less-realistic appearances, as they bridge the gap between lifelike Gynoids like Actroid and the EveR series, and more machinelike robots, such as Wakamaru and the Tamanoi Vinegar Robot, and therefore make it easier for the not-quite-ready-for-Synthetiks portion of the population to get used to artificial lifeforms being in society over the next couple of decades.
Oddly enough, Kokoro doesn’t have any info on Holon-chan or Simroid-chan on their Japanese pages, so as soon as I track down and firmly grip any additional details, you’ll be the first to know. Well, second. Err, you’ll be in the top ten. In the interim, you can watch her introducing herself here, and here, and English information about ‘Real Drive’ would be found on the Production I.G site here.

Also, just so you know, ‘Lars and the Real Girl‘ is due out on DVD in the States 15 April

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Any Synthetiks-related news, Davecat? (Apr 2008)

typed for your pleasure on 2 April 2008, at 8.40 am

Sdtrk: ‘H.C swindle’ by m1dy

Good news: South Korea’s favourite Gynoid singing star, EveR-2 Muse, has appeared in a music video!
Bad news: the music isn’t just awful, it’s godawful. I suppose there are people out there who love that kind of watered-down pop/R&B shite, but I’m not one of them.

Ah well. It’s nice to see EveR-2 Muse making something of herself, at the very least. Observe for yourself below!

What else? O, Simroid-chan, Kokoro Co. Ltd’s Synthetik dental training lass, recently made an appearance on Japanese telly, showing off her stuff. And by ‘stuff’, I mean her rubbery elastic face, and her ability to say ‘ouch’ if the dentist makes a mess of things in her mouth.

She’s pretty cute, which is a given, as she’s Actroid-chan’s sister, but the video’s a lot easier to tolerate if watching someone get their teeth worked on doesn’t affect you. Hrrr. *shudders*
And you know it’s that time of the year again. Introducing… Phoenix Studios’ Miss April, on sale now.

null
Don’t worry, she’s brimful of antihistamines

Out of all the Boy Toy Dolls out there, I’d have to say she’s my favourite. Is it her large brown almond eyes and long silky black hair? I do not know! But she’s got a certain je ne sais quoi, that’s for certain. Well done, Nick Black Matt McMullen!

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Any Synthetiks-related news, Davecat? (Mar 2008)

typed for your pleasure on 13 March 2008, at 2.20 am

Sdtrk: ‘Ash on the trees (The sudden ebb of a diatribe)’ by Sunn O))) meets Nurse with wound

That’s right, another one already. But there’s a sackful of stuff to mention! Plus, there’s a synchronistic reason I’m posting this so soon after last month’s, which you’ll see at the end…

First, do you know German? Do you know a German, who coincidentally knows German? Tell them they should get to work and subtitle this videoclip that aired recently on the German documentary show, Polylux. Not just for your best friends Davecat and Sidore, but for all iDollators and curious parties. Yeah, altruism.


What, no tea for her?

RealDolls – wenn Männer Puppen lieben

The new dream women are called Melanie, Claudia or Annika. They are 1,65m largely, 50 Kilos heavily – and consist of silicone. Some men cannot live no more without it.
taken from this site

Someone ripped it to YouTube, but they only managed to get part of it, and YouTube pulled it a couple of hours later, due to copyright cockfighting. Not only does it feature Harald und Ramona above, who seem like a nice couple, but you get to see Deutsche iDollator Dollcaretaker spending time with his lovely ladies Annika and Melanie. Worth watching! But IT NEEDS ENGLISH SUBTITLES. I AM SERIOUS. Also, I need some way to get a copy of it. My demands are simple.

Now, for those of you who’ve been keeping up with Phoenix Studios Grande Masterplan, you’ll know that the March Boy Toy Doll is available. I can’t believe Miss Hyde scooped me on that. Clearly I’m losing my edge.


Does she taste minty, like a Shamrock shake? SOLD

Since the Dolls seem to be styled after what makes that particular month most memorable (December = Xmas, February = Valentine’s day, etc), I can’t wait to see Miss October. rrrRowr.

Also! According to a post by the good Technosexuals over at spurtBOT, they spotted an article from futurist and pro-Synthetik writer Richard Evans, wherein he interviews Hiroshi Ishiguro, the genius behind the Actroid series.

The professor is passionate about the duties of scientists and what they should achieve on behalf of the public, with public money – ‘we are here to continue research and to make a better world, not build and preserve our own small empires’. He is also a devoted father, and comes across as a complex character – pragmatic and direct. […] When questioned on funding, he explains that none of the lab’s money comes from the military, as Japan doesn’t have an army (only a self-defence force) – ‘so we are able to develop robots that help people, not hurt them’. It is perhaps telling that his favourite movie is Bicentennial Man, based on Isaac Asimov’s short story and starring Robin Williams. This tale of a robotic helper who wants to become human is key to Ishiguro’s vision of a future populated with robots that assist us and become useful members of society.
taken from this site

Also revealed in the interview is that David Hanson of Hanson Robotics will soon be joining forces with Ishiguro-san’s Osaka Labs, to work together on future projects. Pretty ace, I’d say…
While we’re on the topic of Synthetiks builders, whatever happened to Shunichi Mizuno? I remember seeing footage of his sexy Marilyn Monroe Gynoid on an episode of ‘Ripley’s Believe it or Not!’ ages ago, and the man seems to have disappeared entirely from existence. The way things are with contemporary artificial human development, he’s missing out on all the fun!

Japan has come forth with another new Doll manufacturer: Fivestars Laboratory Inc. To be honest, they’re not really new, as I recall seeing their name on teh Internuts before, but their new product, the Dollche series of 1/1 scale ball-joint Dolls, is rather attention-getting.


She’s got good guitar-playing fingers

Their Type 910 model boasts 55 movable joints, and stands at 147 cm, with measurements of B.33 / W.20 / H.30. Hrrm, tiny. And despite all those measurements listed, they don’t say how much they weigh…
Even though the site has a fair amount of English (heh, ‘Engrish’), they don’t seem to offer their product for sale outside Japan. At which point, I suppose you’d get on the horn to your favourite deputy service, and start working out some arrangements…

You can view a rather Hideaki Anno-esque promotional film on Dollche’s YouTube page. Personally, they’re too small, and I find their features are a bit too Doll-like — which may seem a strange epithet coming from me, but I can’t say I’m too keen on the eyes, as they’re a wee bit too stylised for my tastes. However, this isn’t to say that I don’t like the Dollche series as an idea. But that’s a given, really. 1/1 scale ball-joint Dolls? That sort of concept hasn’t been in use since Hans Bellmer made his lasses!

And speaking of Bellmer, today would’ve been his 106th birthday! (Yes, I still have to write an extended post about the man, don’t remind me.) Here’s to one of the more famous iDollators in history! Thanks to his unique and somewhat pervy Surrealist vision, he’s gained a certain immortality

ADDENDUM (16 March): Ask and ye shall receive: an alert reader in Germany wrote up a translation to the Harald und Ramona segment mentioned above. Check it out in the Comments section!

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No need for anaesthetic, just switch her off

typed for your pleasure on 28 November 2007, at 2.18 pm

Sdtrk: ‘Cemetry gates’ by the Smiths

Ha ha! Looks like even Gynoids aren’t exempt from visiting the dentist now! Now they can go through what I recently went through. Sucks to be you, Little Miss Synthetik! Ha!


As long as the nurse doesn’t start asking ‘Is it sssafe?’, then she should be alright

Humanoid robot teaches dentists to feel people’s pain
Yahoo! News | Wed Nov 28, 4:59 AM ET

Japan’s future dentists may soon be able to better appreciate patients’ pain by training on a humanoid robot that can mumble “ouch” when the drill hits a nerve.

The robot, resembling an attractive young woman with long black hair and a pink sweater, also can listen to instructions and react to pain by moving her eyes or hands.

A group of robot and computer makers presented the high-tech dental patient in Tokyo at the 2007 International Robot Exhibition, a four-day technology showcase that opened Wednesday.

The medical simulation robot, named “Simroid,” is designed to be used for clinical training at dental schools, said Tatsuo Matsuzaki, an official at robot maker Kokoro Company Ltd., which developed the body and control system.
the rest of the article is here

For a while, I was wondering what the forward-thinking people at Kokoro Co. Ltd. were up to, as I hadn’t seen nor heard any Actroid news in months. And believe me, I looked. But it’s good to know they’re not resting on their laurels…
Although you can’t exactly tell from the above photo, Simroid-chan’s pretty cute, even when there’s a bunch of people jamming their hands into her mouth. At the very least, you know she takes care of her teeth.

I found a couple of videos of her in action as well, but I’m debating whether to upload them to my YouTube page, or let the Missus put them on her Dailymotion page. Dailymotion has been giving us problems as of late, as most, if not all, of the videos we’ve uploaded have been marked as having inappropriate content. Bloody ridiculous. I’ll figure out something relatively soon

EDIT (2.31 pm): Well, damnit, Pink Tentacle. I’LL GET YOU NEXT TIME *shakes fist*

ta very much to SafeTinspector for the hip tip

Technorati tags: robots, Androids, Gynoids, Kokoro Co. Ltd., Actroid, dentistry

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Any Synthetiks-related news, Davecat? (Oct 2007)

typed for your pleasure on 21 October 2007, at 10.43 pm

Sdtrk: ‘Think about life’ by Paul cries

Despite the fact that you can’t turn in any direction without seeing something about ‘Lars and the Real Girl’ these days, at first I was kinda despairing for something else to write about. Suddenly! Alert reader Zach sent me this encouraging article. Danke sehr, Zach!

Robots soon will become more human-like in appearance, researcher says
By Charles Q. Choi
Updated: 6:05 p.m. ET Oct 12, 2007 | msnbc.com

Humans could marry robots within the century. And consummate those vows.

“My forecast is that around 2050, the state of Massachusetts will be the first jurisdiction to legalize marriages with robots,” artificial intelligence researcher David Levy at the University of Maastricht in the Netherlands told LiveScience. Levy recently completed his Ph.D. work on the subject of human-robot relationships, covering many of the privileges and practices that generally come with marriage as well as outside of it.

At first, sex with robots might be considered geeky, “but once you have a story like ‘I had sex with a robot, and it was great!’ appear someplace like Cosmo magazine, I’d expect many people to jump on the bandwagon,” Levy said.

[…] Levy argues that psychologists have identified roughly a dozen basic reasons why people fall in love, “and almost all of them could apply to human-robot relationships. For instance, one thing that prompts people to fall in love are similarities in personality and knowledge, and all of this is programmable. Another reason people are more likely to fall in love is if they know the other person likes them, and that’s programmable too.”
the rest of the article is here

2050, eh? I CAN’T WAIT UNTIL TWENTYFECKINGFIFTY! YOU PEOPLE NEED TO STEP YOUR SHIT UP!! Sorry.
As much as I love RealDolls and the like, their only flaw is that they can’t move or speak of their own volition — they’re passive. For some of us, having an advanced version of Actroid — one that wasn’t rooted to a single spot, among other things — would be the perfect partner. It’s a matter of waiting, as the technology is advancing rapidly towards that point, but I hate waiting…

Also, that loverly Violet Blue of tiny nibbles wrote some very nice things about me and other iDollators in a recent article for the San Francisco Gate, but have you seen the story for the Associated Press?

‘Lars’ movie shines light on RealDolls
By SANDY COHEN, AP Entertainment Writer | Wed Oct 17, 3:48 PM ET

A dozen headless female bodies hang from industrial metal hooks in the center of the room. To the left are a table of plastic faces, awaiting makeup. To the right, a stack of silicone molds ready for the next order of life-sized love toys.

Normally reserved for private play, these high-end, anatomically correct dolls are getting big-screen exposure with the recent release of “Lars and the Real Girl,” an offbeat, surprisingly chaste comedy about a lonely introvert (Ryan Gosling) and Bianca, the silicone object of his affection.

Bianca, a freckle-nosed brunette, was born just east of San Diego at Abyss Creations. The 11-year-old company that makes RealDolls will ship 400 dolls to the U.S. and abroad this year — at upward of $6,500 each.

RealDolls can be actresses, lovers, photo subjects or companions. Customers can choose from 10 body types, 16 faces and 17 hairstyles to create their dream girl. They specify skin tone, hair and eye color, makeup palette and nail-polish shade. The dolls have interchangeable faces ($500 each), so with the pull of some Velcro and the flip of a wig, she’s like a whole new gal.

[…] For many doll owners, and for Gosling’s character in the film, the dolls are more like companions, each with her own personality and presence.”She looks like a person,” says Rob McKay, 55, a writer who owns two dolls, Lily and Eden. “Even though she’s not a breathing person, psychologically you feel like someone is with you. They’re like a balm for loneliness or aloneness.”
the rest of the article is here

Personally, I missed the deadline to be in on this by about an hour, but all of the participants interviewed were more than capable of answering the questions. Moreso, even. And it’s always nice to read a mainstream article that doesn’t paint a negative picture of iDollators

So will I see ‘Lars etc etc’? Yes, yes. If there’s a Doll in it, it kinda goes without saying. In reading one of the fleet of stories concerning the fillum, I found it rather interesting (again, an adjective I use to denote ‘possibly good, possibly bad’) that Bianca is supposed to be half-Danish, half-Brazilian. Now, people who know of my Synthetik wife’s extensive backstory know she’s half-English, half-Japanese, and since ‘Kitten with a Whip!’ is still trapped in amber, newcomers will undoubtedly accuse me of ripping off ‘Lars etc etc’. But the savvier readers amongst you will you know the truth, right?

In another story about the film, Ryan Gosling, who plays Lars, is quoted as saying,

[Bianca] relaxed me — she was a support system… People hear the idea for this film, and they think, ‘Oh, how kitschy or funny,’ but there’s a whole culture of guys out there who have these dolls, and they have very intimate relationships with them. Part of it is sexual, but a lot of it is emotional… I think it’s a romantic idea the way that Nancy approached the script, that love’s not a transaction. It’s something you have to give, and you give it freely to whoever and whatever you want.

I’ve never known who Ryan was prior to this release, but now I know he’s a thinking individual, cos quite obviously, he gets it. Kudos, sir!

Also, this past Saturday eve I attended the 2nd Michigan Doll Congress, which is much less official than it sounds. Mahtek, Euchre, littluvr from Minnesota, CJD from Canada, Amber Hawk Swanson and myself converged at one of the fine Antonio’s locations, and talked shop for several hours. Mahtek even passed round his cellphone at one point, so we could all speak to fellow Doll owner campdaan over in California. Round 9pm, we left; Amber, who drove from Chicago with her friends, made her leave, and the rest of us went back to Mahtek’s place, and picked up where we left off. Needless to say, a good time was had by all! We intend on making this a semi-regular thing; we’re thinking the next one will be when Stacy Leigh brings some of her excellent photos to an upcoming art show somewhere in the tri-county area. You can’t see me from here, but I’m rubbing my hands together in anticipation. Well, I will be, as soon as I stop typing this sentence.
Ah, there we go.


Left, Organik Amber; right, your humble narrator

Finally, I think we can all agree that Charlie Sheen needs to be thrown headfirst through a plate-glass window. What a fucking idiot. I don’t care if you love Dolls, or if you think they’re ‘creepy’, what he did is pretty much the equivalent of taking $7000 and setting it ablaze. Just goes to show you that money can’t buy common sense

Technorati tags: robots, Androids, Gynoids, David Levy, Violet Blue, RealDolls, iDollators, Amber Hawk Swanson, Lars and the Real Girl, Ryan Gosling

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Any Synthetiks-related news, Davecat? (Jun 2007)

typed for your pleasure on 10 June 2007, at 2.04 pm

Sdtrk: ‘Tony Williams deathspace’ by Merzbow

Recently, Erin O’Brien, writer for the Cleveland Free Times, wrote a tale entitled ‘Guys and Dolls‘ (a popular title! I can’t imagine why) about her experiences hanging out for a couple of weeks on The Doll Forum.

Owners of the eerily realistic dolls are the butt of jokes and the subjects of unsolicited psychological analysis and feminist soapboxes worldwide. Nonetheless, RealDoll fascinated me and I smoldered with curiosity about those who admire her.

Granted, there are a couple of parts where her impressions come off as unflattering, but for the most part, it’s an even-handed piece which doesn’t condemn, as she took direct quotes from Doll owners themselves. She’d also written a companion post in her blog, as well as a follow-up post.

Her article caused a bit of a storm in a teacup, as several iDollators weren’t initially civil to her, which may have coloured her opinions slightly. But being an iDollator myself, I can entirely understand, as there have been several occasions where opportunistic writers have come a-calling to the Forum, looking to dig up some dirt on this weird and creepy subculture of bizarre perverts, and with a topic like this, frankly, a single smear campaign is one too many. So a natural reaction to outsiders is one of snarling suspicion, which, as far as I’m concerned, is pretty justified. More writers — particularly, writers who genuinely want to present Doll owners in a positive, or at the very least, neutral, light — need to do their homework beforehand, and realise that we iDollators are fiercely protective of our interest, our hobby, our lifestyle, our partners. Cos as time goes on, we’ll be swelling the ranks, but right now, we’re in the minority, and at this stage, bad publicity is worse than none at all.
But, having said that, I do admire Erin for not only sticking to her guns, but for coming up with a non-prejudicial piece. At the very least, she made an honest effort to understand our culture, which is more than I can say for most people.

Moving on! Naturally, anyone that knows me on any level above that of ‘aquaintance’ knows that I’m very pro-robotics, particularly when those robots closely resemble Organiks. However, in the interest of objectivity and possible debate, here’s an article that presents the other side of the coin:

Should robots be built to look more like us?
By Eric Hand
ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH | 05/29/2007

When it comes down to it, Lewis the robot isn’t much more than a red trash can on wheels. And its designer, Washington University computer scientist William Smart, likes it that way.

“I don’t want to put fuzzy heads on my robots,” he said. “It’s a tool. You don’t have an emotional relationship with a robot.”

Whether or not the relationships are emotional, robots are certainly becoming more social. Especially in Japan, where robots are doing everything from collecting garbage to bathing the elderly to providing child care. Lewis, a picture-taking robot, also has a social role — to linger on the edges of gatherings and catch people in candid poses.

As these social robots lurch their way into our lives, a question arises: What should they look like? Some scientists say they should look and talk like people, and take advantage of people’s tendencies to personify. (Think C3PO.) Others, such as Smart, say they should remain fundamentally nonhuman — intelligent and capable of reading people, but not obviously anthropomorphic. (Think R2D2.)

“It’s definitely a design decision, and it’s one that doesn’t have an obvious answer,” said Brian Scassellati, a Yale University computer scientist.
the rest of the article is here

I can respect where Mr Smart is coming from, but obviously I can’t agree with him. As robotic creations edge their way into mainstream society, I definitely believe there’ll be a need for non-anthropomorphic robots to perform non-obtrusive, behind-the-scenes tasks, but there’ll also be a need for more human-like Synthetiks, such as Actroid et al, to undertake more social duties, such as child-minding, nursing, err, receptionist… ing. And you certainly can’t call something with any advanced artificial intelligence a ‘tool’. There’s absolutely no reason why all robots have to resemble rolling wheelie bins; it’s limiting and unimaginative. That’d be the equivalent of decreeing that all cars must resemble the Subaru 360. Waitaminute — that’s a fantastic idea!

And finally, something on the Good end of the Interesting spectrum: Nick Rucka of DiY film studio Maboroshii Productions is preparing to screen his 2002 documentary, ‘Real Doll Doctor‘. He was kind enough to post me an advance copy, and despite the tired appeal to ‘pervs and fans of the weird’, it’s a rather objective documentary. Clocking in at 14 min, it simply details our favourite Doll refurbisher inking up someone’s arm at his day job, and at work repairing a lass. There’s no soundtrack, but I find that could focus the viewer’s attention to what’s being said. Much like Erin’s article, it’s open-ended and entirely nonjudgemental, although it could do with a wee bit of narrative background, especially over the scenes in the (old) Abyss creations studios. I look at it this way — there’s always going to be a viewer who really doesn’t know what the whole RealDoll phenomenon is, so a bit of background wouldn’t go amiss. Hell, I’d volunteer to do the narration if I had the technological means to do so…
Nick tells me that IFC.com has confirmed that they’ll be hosting his film, so keep an eye out for it!

‘Shouting to hear the echoes’: Synthetiks news you can use! As per usual


An alternate universe Erin logs into ‘The Organik Forum’

Technorati tags: robots, RealDoll, Abyss creations, iDollators, documentary

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