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Can robots be creative?

British gallery owner Aidan Meller hopes to go some way towards answering that query with Ai-Da, who her manufacturers say are going to have the ability to draw individuals from sight using a pen in her bionic hand. Meller is overseeing the final stages of her construction by engineers in Cornwall-based Engineered Arts.

“She’s going to actually be drawing and we are expecting to then build technology for her to paint,” Meller said after seeing Ai-Da’s prosthetic mind being carefully brought to existence by specialists independently attaching hairs to shape her eyebrows.

“But as a performance artist she will be able to engage with audiences and actually get messages across; asking those questions relating to technology now.”

The rubberised head of Ai-Da is given lifelike features by Mike Humphrey

Her skeletal robotic mind may stand disembodied onto a workbench, but her moves are very much alive.

Cameras in every one of her eyeballs recognise individual attributes – she will make eye contact and follow you round the room, opening and closing her mouth as you do. Get too close and she will back away, blinking, as though in shock.

Ai-Da’s manufacturers say she will have a”RoboThespian” body with expressive movements and she’ll talk and answer inquiries.

“There is AI (artificial intelligence) running from the computer vision that lets the robot to monitor faces to recognise facial attributes and to mimic your saying,” said Marcus Hold, Design & Production Engineer in Engineered Arts.

Ai-Da’s makers are utilizing”Mesmer” life-like robot technology to get her mind, and once finished she’ll have a mixed race look with long dark hair, silicone skin and 3D printed teeth and gums.

“(Mesmer) brings with the development of applications mechanics and electronic equipment to produce a lifelike face with lifelike gestures at a small human sized package,” Hold said.


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