Meet the Creepy Humanoid Robot That Resembles Sarah Palin

Yangyang features skin made from a special type of silica gel to replicate the texture of human skin. Yangyang can talk, move its head, shake hands and even give hugs.

Photo Caption: Yangyang (left) is a new humanoid robot that accidentally resembles Sarah Palin. Yangyang was designed by the Shanghai Shenqing Industry and Japanese robotics expert Hiroshi Ishiguro.

Humanoid robots just keep getting creepier. You’ve probably already seen ChihiraAico, Toshiba’s humanoid robot that resemble a 32-year-old Japanese hostess that makes conversation and sings.

But Yangyang, a new humanoid robot developed by China’s Shanghai Yangyang Intelligent Robot Science Service Centre and renowned Japanese robotics professor Hiroshi Ishiguro, takes the creepiness factor to the next level.

The first thing that comes to mind when seeing this humanoid for the first time is its resemblance to Sarah Palin, the former Governor of Alaska. And we’re not alone with that thought.

Photos: Meet Yangyang the Female Humanoid Robot

However, the resemblance is a coincidence, according to Yangyang’s creators. YangYang is actually modeled after Song Yang, a Chinese researcher and wife of the president of tech company Shanghai Shenqing Industry (SSI).

“After they made one of me, I got all these really amazing feelings,” Yang tells Reuters. “For instance, because I feel it’s like me, if when she’s performing her movements, expressions are not ideal, if she doesn’t do it well, I’ll feel it’s a real shame.”

Yangyang features skin made from a special type of silica gel to replicate the texture of human skin. Yangyang can talk, move its head, shake hands and even give hugs.

Yangyang was created to help popularize robotics with young people. Ishiguro even tells Motherboard that Yangyang could also be used as a robot “greeter” in department stores or museums. “The most important concept is to extend someone’s life. If we have an android, we can extend our experience and do several things simultaneously.”

Ishiguro, director of the Intelligent Robotics Laboratory at Osaka University, is well-known for his android series. He recently developed humanoid robots to staff the National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation in Japan.The humanoids would interact with visitors and read news reports in an effort to encourage interaction between humans and robots and explore what differentiates the two.

Osaka University also developed humanoid robots that will be staffing the new Henn-na Hotel at the Huis Ten Bosch theme park in Sasebo, Japan. The robots will help guests with bags, clean rooms, manage the front desk, and perform other hotel services.




About the Author

Steve Crowe · Steve Crowe is managing editor of Robotics Trends. Steve has been writing about technology since 2008. He lives in Belchertown, MA with his wife and daughter.
Contact Steve Crowe: scrowe@ehpub.com  ·  View More by Steve Crowe.




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