Of course there are many robots around that can weave through wreckages and be your buddy and even your pet. This one however, begun as a work of art. Daniel Jay Bertner who is the inventor of the GIA (Gestural Interactive Automaton) created the sculpture not to be admired but apparently it is to admire you. The robot which is in essence a projector, a projection sphere and a webcam which are all attached to three servo-controlled arms will feature a human face which is projected on the orb like projection sphere and it will follow and look at people who look at it. In addition to that, the nifty little work of art even has an adaptable emotional reaction based on how people look at it.

While many might think that this serves no purpose, the reported ‘actual point’ of it is to emulate and socially engage the people around it so that it can collect data and develop a better understanding, in order to learn how to socialize and “communicate” (via facial expressions) with more people in the future. How it tracks the people around it, is with an open-source motion tracking and facial recognition software that is used as the backbone of the sculpture. Embedded above is a brief video of how it works. As I view the video, somehow the only thing that comes to my mind is an ATM-machine snarling angrily right before it finds (tracks) me and subsequently flattens me. But I really don’t think the machines are going to rise up anytime soon so don’t start worrying just yet.

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