Japanese robot to allow long distance chats by mimicking speakers’ movements

August 5th, 2010 - 1:10 pm ICT by ANI  

New York, Aug 5 (ANI): The newly designed Japanese robot- Telenoid R1- has no legs, stumps instead of arms, and is only as tall as a young child, but its forte is that it can allow people to “chat” from long distances by mimicking the movements of the speaker.

Designed by Japanese robotocist Hiroshi Ishiguro, the device is operated by having a user sit at a computer that is connected to a webcam.

The person’s movements are tracked by the webcam, which also captures his voice.

The user’s movements are then mimicked by the easily transportable Telenoid, which is positioned with the recipient of the message.

“The unique appearance may be eerie when we first see it. However, once we communicate with others by using the telenoid, we can adapt to it,” the New York Daily News quoted Ishiguro as telling the Daily Mail.

Ishiguro, who in the past has come up with an eerily lifelike female robot named the Gemnoid F, designed the new bot so that actuators in the device let it move realistically.

This year, the Telenoid R1 will be shown at the Ars Electronica festival in Linz, Austria.

A commercial version is expected to be sold before the end of this year for about 5,000 pounds.

While it would take some getting used to, but the creepy mini bot just might double as a friend - for someone with a good imagination.

“If a friend speaks from the telenoid, we can imagine the friend’s face on the telenoid’s face. If we embrace it, we have the feeling, that we embrace the friend,” said Ishiguro. (ANI)

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