[CeBIT 2012] German scientists who hail from the Fraunhofer Institute did show off their ‘sketching robot’ that is currently being paraded at CeBIT, the world’s largest computer fair that is happening Cebit, in Hanover, Germany. Just how does the robot work? For starters, it will snap a photo of its subject, using the pre-loaded software to analyze one’s face, translating the results of the analysis into a sketch. Needless to say, coming from a soul-less device like a robot, you cannot simply write an algorithm for art – so do not expect the end result to rival a work from the old masters like Van Gogh, let alone the Renaissance pieces.

Still, this digital caricaturist has enough in it to draw an accurate likeness of its subject in a matter of just three minutes. Karin Stein of Fraunhofer says, “This robot here which was made for CeBIT portrays a person. It sketches characteristic features such as glasses, the nose, ears. At our laboratory, we have the same robot system which is being used to test the quality of materials, especially reflection features.” Real artists need not worry about someone stealing their rice bowl, since it will cost over 40,000 Euros to build.

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