Tuesday, August 02, 2011

The human body is a machine which winds its own springs.
It is the living image of perpetual movement.

-Julien Offroy de La Mettrie, Man a Machine


Vaucanson’s duck

When first presented to the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia in 1928, the automaton was of unknown origin. Once restored to working order, the automaton itself provided the answer when it penned the words "written by the automaton of Maillardet". – Wikipedia

The Turk – not an automaton but a hoax: a man hidden inside played chess

Babbage’s Difference Engine was not constructed during his lifetime
but replicas were later made.
It's also the subject of a collaborative novel by
the cyberpunk pioneers William Gibson and Bruce Sterling.

Ada Lovelace, “the first programmer”

Alan Turing, who proposed the “Turing test”
for artificial intelligence, and the man behind the Enigma machine,
which is said to have won World War II.

The first robot? A scene from the original production of Karel Capek’s R.U.R.


The Golem
Mickey Mouse: Mickey’s Mechanical Man

The Tin Man from The Wizard of Oz

Elektro and his robot dog Sparko

Pinocchio’s now a boy

Who wants to turn back into a toy . . .

-Rufus Wainwright

Talos, the living bronze statue of Greek mythology,
as imagined by Ray Harryhausen in his 1953 film,
Jason and the Argonauts

Forbidden Planet: Robby the Robot with his creator Morbius

The Day the Earth Stood Still: Gort, the robot from outer space,
sent to enforce worldwide peace with the threat of
total annihilation
Audio-animatronic Abraham Lincoln at Disneyland

Star Wars: C3PO and R2-D2

Blade Runner: Rachael, a replicant


RoboCop: The ED-209

The Terminator: A human face

The Terminator: The machine beneath the skin

Star Trek: The Next Generation: Data, a fully functional android with a positronic brain

Real Robots


Cog is not quite sure what to think of you

ASIMO wants to say hi

AIBO the Robot Dog

Say Hello to QRIO! (the “next generation” after ASIMO—both now discontinued

Robonova Ballet

Charting the Uncanny Valley: Part 1 of 7

Karl F. McDorman presents a lecture on the Uncanny Valley – Part 1 of 7