WT-6 Waseda Talking Robot Head From Neuromancer

WT-6, in the Waseda Talker series of robots, is a robotic talking head described by its creators as an "anthropomorphic talking robot" because it creates speech with a set of articulators that duplicate the mechanical elements of human speech-making.

(WT-7 anthropomorphic talking robot)

The WT-6 anthropomorphic talking robot is the creation of Atsuo Takanishi and his Ph.D. student Kotaro Fukui at Waseda University in Tokyo. Takanishi and his group used mechanical actuators and a variety of materials to re-create the entire human vocal system. The vocal cavity, tongue, vocal chords, lips, teeth, soft palate and lungs were modeled from soft plastics and polymers.

(Waseda Talking robot articulators [earlier WT-5 version])

The robotic vocal chords are described this way for WT-5, the immediate predecessor to the current model:

Unlike a musical reed which has been used in conventional mechanical speech synthesizer, the vocal cord model is formed to mimic the human's vocal cord in the shape and the biological structure. It is made of a thermoplastic rubber, Septonh (Kuraray Co. Ltd.) of which the elasticity like a human's, and has 3-DOF mechanisms which is similar to the human structure. 1-DOF link mechanism could change the pitch by stretching the length of the vocal cords.

According to listeners, the result is "clear, natural speech" - in Japanese, of course.

In his 1984 novel Neuromancer, science fiction writer William Gibson wrote about an elaborate mechanical talking head that served as an output terminal:

…a head, an intricately worked bust, cloisonné over platinum, studded with seed pearls and lapis. ..The thing was a computer terminal…it could talk. And not in a synth-voice, but with a beautiful arrangement of gears and miniature organ pipes. It was a baroque thing for anyone to have constructed...
(Read more about about William Gibson's talking head)

Take a look at these robots that also imitate life:

Found this one here with more information at the Waseda-Talker Robot Series page and this abstract.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 8/23/2006)

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 ( 1 )

Related News Stories - (" Robotics ")

X125 Snake-Arm Inspection Robot Video
'... long, flexible, glittering tentacles...' - HG Wells, 1898.

FORTIS Exoskeleton Not Quite Ripley's Alien-Fighting Exoskeleton
'Earth's scientists solved the problem to some extent by devising rigid metallic clothing...' - Edmond Hamilton, 1932.

Kirobo Mini - Your Dashboard Droid
No protocol droid needed for translation!

3D Printed Soft Robotic Tentacle May Grab You
'Monique's tissues had at least three other basic attractor modes as well...' - Rudy Rucker, 1997.


  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

Solowheel Xtreme Heinlein Tumblebug Video
'The cadets 'stood to horse' alongside their poised tumblebugs...'

Algorithm Predicts Marriage Success (HAL 9000 Will See You Now)
'I can tell from your voice harmonics, Dave, that you're badly upset....'

Denmark Island Earth (Verdenskortet ala Ringworld)
'They wanted to keep something of what they were losing...'

Humai Startup To Implant Your Brain In Robot Body
'The astounded onlookers saw a human brain snugly encased in a transparent skull-shaped receptacle.'

Blue Origin Reusable Rocket's Vertical Landing
We're getting there, one launch at a time.

X125 Snake-Arm Inspection Robot Video
'... long, flexible, glittering tentacles...'

Super-Thin Smart Glazing Displays
'...a wide sheet of clear material suddenly flared with light and swirling color.'

Have Scientists Found A Parallel Universe Leaking Into Ours
'Ellis had found a weak point, a shimmer, at which another continuum completely had been visible.'

Active Wellness Smart Car Seat
'Maybe the car was right...'

Tech Tats Prototype Sfnal Devices
'...Permanently fixed in the centre of his forehead.'

ANNABELL AI Can Learn English From Scratch
'...Could understand not only classic programming but also Loglan and English..."

Tesla Suit Gives Haptic Hugs
'Then a pressure on the lips...'

Surgically Implantable Artificial Kidney Starts Testing
'George Walt... proved the workability of wholly mechanical organs...'

Self-Filling Water Bottle Is Beetle-Based
'That moisture trickles down...'

Senate Passes Space Mining Legislation
'The law of filing on newly discovered asteroids was definite...'

Microsoft's Surface Book Is Part Clipboard
'Floyd sometimes wondered if the Newspad, and the fantastic technology behind it, was the last word in man's quest for perfect communications...'

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.