Thought for Friday

Android head. Hanson Robotics

Android head. Hanson Robotics

The Tanhauser Gate

I’ve seen things you people wouldn’t believe. Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion. I watched c-beams glitter in the dark near the Tanhauser Gate. All those moments will be lost in time, like tears in rain… 

Bear with me on this one, OK?
It all started yesterday while listening to classic fm in the studio. Wagner’s Tannhäuser was playing and although my taste in classical music leans more toward Vaughan Williams than Richard Wagner I do have a soft spot for this piece.

Later at home I wanted to find out more about Tannhäuser, both the piece of music and the  knight and legend behind it. Wikipedia gave me the information I wanted but also led me in a strange sort of way to quote above. (See I told you to bear with me on this one).

The words are those spoken by the dying replicant, Roy Batty (Rutger Hauer), introspectively says the phrase, during a rain downpour, regarding his own death in the film Blade Runner by Ridley Scott.

Blade Runner poster by John Alvin

Blade Runner poster by John Alvin

Now this reminded me of a TED talk by David Hanson of Hanson Robotics and the incredible work they are doing in the field of androids. (Are you still with me?) To quote from TED: “David Hanson merges robotics and art to design life-like, social robots that can mimic human expression and emotion.”

Well if you made it this far, thank you, you are very patient with my wandering mind. But to close this post here’s another quote, this one from Hanson himself.

David Hanson

David Hanson and friend

“This moment is the Kitty Hawk of androids. We’re seeing the arrival of conversational robots that can walk in our world. It’s a golden age of invention.” David Hanson, in TIME


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2 Comments

Filed under Media & Film, Robots, Technology, Thought for Friday

2 responses to “Thought for Friday

  1. insertsuggestion

    There is something a little creepy about bodyless android heads …

  2. Yes, give me a good old-fashioned robot any day.

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