Hanson Robotics introduced Zeno, "the world's first, complete robot" at Wired Magazine's NextFest on September 13, 2007.
According to their website, "Zeno is a fantastic combination of an expressive face, a walking body, vision, speech and hearing."
As much fun as Zeno appears to be, I was more impressed by the Albert Einstein version shown on their website. The video demos the walking robot and clearly shows the life-like facial movements.
Their Products page offers an even more exciting possibility...
HumanKind Custom Edition: We can build you! That's right, no matter who you are or where you're from, we can build life-like representation of any character, past or present. Our state of the art 4-D laser scanning technology takes a precise topographical image of your face, covering every nook, cranny and contour, and then transfers the data into a solid mold. Apart from the physical attributes the robot, our team of A.I. developers, scientists and robotic designers will build a personality based on your knowledge, memory, thoughts, and speech patterns.
Priced in the tens of thousands of dollars (and upwards, I would imagine), Hanson Robotics robots offer a range of mechanical marvels in two categories called RoboKind and HumanKind. Currently, Zeno, 17 inches tall and 6 pounds, is the only RoboKind robot listed. However, several HumanKind models exist, including:
1. Joey Chaos: the Humanoid Rock Star
2. A collaboration of East and West: The Albert -Hubo
3. A robotic humanoid sculpture named Vera
4. Jules, our androgynous conversationalist
5. The best of all worlds: Eva
6. One of the first: Yargh-bot
7. A robotic portrait of Philip K. Dick (not for sale)
- Emulate over 62 facial and neck muscles
- Embedded micro-cameras providing vision recognition
- Utilizes the latest in A.I. software technology for face and speech recognition, eye tracking, and conversational operations
- Capable of running in full autonomous or Robo-phone mode, meaning that you can turn off the A.I. to use the robot for local/remote puppeteering or even research
- Portable and can run on up to 1/20 the power required for comparable products
- Interface with standard computers (included with robot)
- Can function in a variety of research environments, including computer vision, computational interaction, and speech perception
You can visit their site at