Philip K. Dick Robot Unveiled At NextFest 2005

One of the distinguishing characteristics of a Philip K. Dick novel is his remarkable ability to blur the line between natural human beings and androids - human by artifice. For example, in his book Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep, he uses devices like the mood organ to make his human characters seem more like biological machines, open to manipulation. At the same time, the artificial human beings are made to seem more life-like.


(Philip K. Dick Robotic Memorial Portrait
At NextFest 2005)

The eerie robotic Philip K. Dick unveiled today at the NextFest 2005 event in Chicago is almost an objectification of Dick's fascination with what really makes people human. The robot was designed to provide a convincing imitation of life, with subtle head movements and facial expressions. The software that gives life to the device is well-stocked with all of Dick's printed works and memoirs. It also has face recognition software and a library of faces; it was capable of recognizing several of Dick's relatives who came to take a look at the project. It includes voice recognition and natural language processing features.

The Philip K. Dick robot is presented in a small 1970's living room; windows shut out excess noise that can ruin the voice recognition software that is used to interpret questions by visitors. I asked several questions, including "Are you paranoid?" and "Can you pass the Voight-Kampff test?"

Unfortunately, the Juke Bot presentation less than fifteen feet away made it difficult to really interact with the robot. So, I asked David Hanson, the CEO and Chief Scientist at Hanson Robotics (co-creators of the Philip K. Dick memorial robotic portrait); he responded with a firm "No" to the second question. Keep an eye on their products, though - this part of the future is coming on fast.

The Philip K. Dick android project is the creation of a team of designers, engineers, programmers and artists. Hanson Robotics, the FedEx Institute of Technology and the Automation and Robotics Research Institute at the University of Texas Arlington collaborated on the project.

If you are interested in life-like robots, take a look at Robot Repliee Q1. Find out more; see the pkd-Android Project and the project description at Hanson Robotics.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 6/24/2005)

Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.

| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |

Would you like to contribute a story tip? It's easy:
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add it here.

Comment/Join discussion ( 4 )

Related News Stories - (" Robotics ")

MIT's Robotic Cheetah Runs Free - And Frolics In The Grass
THEY sent A SLAMHOUND on Turner's trail- William Gibson, 1986.

Flying Robot Has An Arm
Drones with arms. Well, one arm.

T-Mobile Sues Huawei Over Button Pushing Robot Idea From The 1930's
'Not the slightest change in their working betrayed the fact that they were now being directed by a machine instead of human beings.'- Schachner and Zagat, 1931.

Dyson 360 Eye Robot Vacuum Cleaner
'It vacuum-cleaned... or polished, consulting tapes in its idiot memory to decide which.'- Robert Heinlein, 1956.

 

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

 

Current News

MIT's Robotic Cheetah Runs Free - And Frolics In The Grass
'THEY sent A SLAMHOUND on Turner's trail...'

Flying Robot Has An Arm
Drones with arms.

Strati 3D Printed Car
'You rode in it - you know how good it is.'

Tracking Spinning Space Junk
'Loose nuts and bolts... had been accumulating in Earth orbit'

Baidu Kuaisou Dune Poison Snooper Chopsticks
'Unobtrusive inspections with... snoopers... Will it be chaumas - poison in the food?'

Crystalized Light Created At Princeton
'It will be matter, matter made of light...'

The Amazing Gravity-Assisted Journey Of Rosetta
'...We used the [moon's] attraction to give us additional starting speed'

AirDog Auto-Follow Drone Captures Your Awesomeness
'Tight mid-shot and pull out on but behind me...'

Dell's Venue 8 7000 Tablet With RealSense Depth-Mapping
Focus on any part of a picture later.

Google's Cartographer Backpack For Indoor Mapping
'He reached to unsnap the cartograph from his belt.'

T-Mobile Sues Huawei Over Button Pushing Robot Idea From The 1930's
'Not the slightest change in their working betrayed the fact that they were now being directed by a machine instead of human beings.'

Hayabusa-2 Asteroid Cannon Strategy From 1950's SF Novel
'Fire streaked in a thin line from the muzzle of a cannon-like tube...'

Dyson 360 Eye Robot Vacuum Cleaner
'It vacuum-cleaned... or polished, consulting tapes in its idiot memory to decide which.'

First 3D Printer In Space?
'It can be mass-produced only in the orbiting factories...'

Google's Project Wing Will Find You
'Mechanical entities that flit at the edges of our vision, that can go anywhere, that are in our very midst...'

3D Printed Space Pizza For Astronauts
Put those butcher knives aside, and let me save that meal!

More SF in the News Stories

More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.