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 ")

Robot Chef Makes Thousands Of Dinners
'I got one of those new electronic cameras... and I could construct this one to do it exactly right down to the thousandth of a second.'- Anthony Boucher, 1943.

Google Wants To Give Orders To Robot Armies
Just how many devices are they interested in controlling?

Gestures Control Spider Robot Army
'What do you think - four spiders, one per floor?' As seen in Minority Report, the movie.

SpiderFab Spider Robots To Weave Space Structures
'It extrudes material like a spider. How many legs wouldi you have given it?'- Charles Sheffield, 1979.

 

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

Zap Space Debris With Telescope Laser On ISS
'... their lasers vaporized the smaller satellites...'

Moran Cerf, When Will We Get Neuro Tech For Ourselves?
If brainwave-sensing consumer products tickle your fancy...

Velkess Energy Storage System (It's A Flexible Flywheel!)
'The kinetic man unjacked Lalji’s kink-springs from the winding treadmills...'

Performance Enhancing Drugs - In Gaming?
'A faint smell of rachag stimulant wafted down the table.'

Automated Treadmill Adjusts To Your Pace
'The auto-treadmill's bumps and gullies matched...'

Mr. Anderton, Beware This Long-Range Iris Scanner
Try keeping your eyes shut, Mr. Anderton.

Mini Statues Of You From 3D Images
'...A three-dimensional simulacrum of himself six inches high took form.'

'Forever' Camera Powered By Its Own Images
'What I have in this camera is not a record of what you did just now but what will go on here in the next half hour...'

Robot Chef Makes Thousands Of Dinners
'I got one of those new electronic cameras... and I could construct this one to do it exactly right down to the thousandth of a second.'

Revault Wearable Private Cloud Is Too Vaporous
'A man or woman could carry AIs or complete planetary dataspheres...'

Spacex Sticks Landing! But Neglects Lateral Forces
So close!

Lumo Projector Turns Kids Rooms Into Bradbury's Veldt
'The walls began to purr and recede... and presently an African veldt appeared...'

Ground Control Space Beer
Ninkasi Brewing Co. has its own space program.

Google Wants To Give Orders To Robot Armies
Or maybe they aren't bent on world domination.

Gestures Control Spider Robot Army
'What do you think - four spiders, one per floor?'

Hologram Protest World's First
'Their bodies were in their dwelling cells, but their telucid images filled the hall.'

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.