2012.07.08 Japanese Professor Hiroshi Ishiguro

Professor Hiroshi Ishiguro (石黒浩) is director of the Intelligent Robotics Laboratory, part of the Department of Systems Innovation in the Graduate School of Engineering Science at Osaka University, Japan. A notable development of the laboratory is the actroid, a humanoid robot with lifelike appearance and visible behaviour such as facial movements. In robot development, Professor Ishiguro concentrates on the idea of making a robot that is as similar as possible to a live human being; at the unveiling in July 2005 of the "female" android named Repliee Q1Expo, he was quoted as saying "I have developed many robots before, but I soon realised the importance of its appearance. A human-like appearance gives a robot a strong feeling of presence. ... Repliee Q1Expo can interact with people. It can respond to people touching it. It's very satisfying, although we obviously have a long way to go yet."[1] In his opinion, it may be possible to build an android that is indistinguishable from a human, at least during a brief encounter. Ishiguro has made an android that resembles him, called the Geminoid. The Geminoid was among the robots featured by James May in his 5 October 2008 BBC2 documentary on robots Man-Machine in his series Big Ideas. Ishiguro has been listed as one of the 15 Asian Scientists To Watch by Asian Scientist Magazine on 15 May 2011.