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This is Legonardo, an automaton capable of drawing portraits. It doesn’t have the complex clockwork used by automatons of old, like its Swiss counterpart made by Pierre Jacquet-Droz and Henri Maillardet in the 18th century, but it’s pretty neat anyway.
Back in the 18th century, this automaton called ‘The Writer’ was built by Jaquet Droz. After more than 200 years, the robot has been reanimated, and it’s way creepier than any robot made today.
Our brothers-in-arms over at Gizmodo Poland have stumbled upon something magical. Witness Mecha Fish, so named by me because it is a fearsome beast that navigates kiddie pools and cannot be tamed thanks to a kind of rudimentary Bluetooth echolocation.
If this Silver Swan automaton were invented yesterday, it would have surprised me for its realism, and the fact that it’s made of glass and silver. When I learnt it’s from the 18th century, it completely blew me away.
newVideoPlayer("chinesemagician_gawker.flv", 475, 376);It’s not quite Asimo, but this Chinese magician automaton (read: crappy wooden robot) does one thing and one thing only: make other wooden automatons appear and disappear from containers (we don’t count sporting a bad arse mustache as a thing). It’s going to be auctioned off on October 28 at Skinner in Bolton, MA, if any of you are interested. Illusions, Michael. [Boing Boing]