College Student Working on Hatsune Miku Robot
posted on by Carlos Cadorniga
As a serious upgrade from a body pillow, a Japanese university student has just brought Vocaloid icon Hatsune Miku into our world...sort of.
A life-sized robot, designed to look like the synthesized idol singer, has recently been developed in Japan. The robot was created by Takuma Takemoto, a 23-year-old second-year student at Kwansei Gakuin University. With his creation's various features, one is able to make this robot as expressive as it can be.
Using a built-in camera, the Miku-bot is able to read the facial changes of its operator and generate various three-dimensional expressions in real time. Thanks to a motor installed into its neck, it can even cock its head to further emulate the operator's expressive motions. And of course, it comes with a singing functionality which can be activated by humming a tune into a built-in microphone and inputting the lyrics via a keyboard.
Speaking on the early stages of the Miku-bot development, Takemoto recalled watching the virtual idol's concerts on-screen.
"I can't be happy with just being a fan," Takemoto stated. "I want Hatsune Miku here in the real world."
He hope to further his technology in the future by creating other robotic virtual characters and even being able to make them dance.
Miku's vast popularity has spurred several other attempts to use virtual reality devices to mimic actual interaction with her, including sleeping next to her, kissing her, and using the Power Glove to touch her. She's been built out of Legos, sculpted into a life-size statue, and even held a concert in the clouds.