Denmark is now a teensy bit scarier, following the European debut of the Cadillac of robot doubles.
Associate professor Henrik Scharfe, of the Aalborg University in Denmark, has been immortalized in scary robot form. Scharfe is the head of the University’s Computer-Mediated Epistemology Center, and hopes to use his robotic doppelganger to help study human interaction.
Scharfe didn’t build the robot, however. Instead, Kokoro Robotics in Japan, which has a long history of creating frightening robots, constructed the duplicate using its Geminoid-F platform. The robot looks remarkably life-like – even down to the not-quite-even teeth – but the second it moves, it’s obvious that it’s not real. The robot, as with all Geminoid-F robots, is controlled by a human operator and can mimic their motions and facial expressions – albeit jerkily – using a series of servo-motors.
There’s more to the robot than just being a creepy teaching aid though. Aalborg is also becoming the first Geminoid lab outside Japan, representing a long-term commitment to study the way that humans and robots interact. According to Scharfe, the days of robots being nothing more industrial equipment are over. He said that the evolution of robots parallels that of computers: they began as nothing more than tools, and eventually become a medium in their own right.
There’s a lot more information – plus a lot more videos – on the official website for Aalborg’s Geminoid Lab. Chances are, we’ll be seeing a lot more of these robots in the future.
Source: via io9