Ever since a cute, anthropomorphized Anglepoise lamp starred in Luxo Jr., it became Pixar’s mascot. Now three students from Victoria University of Wellington in New Zealand have created a black desk lamp which could be Luxo’s brother from another mother. (She was a candelabra.)
Shanshan Zhou, Adam Ben-Dror, and Joss Doggett created the lamp and called it Pinokio. Although it’s not as helpful as the last robotic desk lamp we featured, it makes up for its lack of assisting abilities with cuteness. Pinokio has a webcam, facial recognition software, and six servos. The processor is an Arduino, and it uses Processing and OpenCV software.
Customized computer code and electronic circuit design imbues Lamp with the ability to be aware of its environment, especially people, and to expresses a dynamic range of behaviour. As it negotiates its world, we the human audience can see that Lamp shares many traits possessed by animals, generating a range of emotional sympathies. In the end we may ask: Is Pinokio only a lamp? – a useful machine? Perhaps we should put the book aside and meet a new friend. [Vimeo via Technabob]
You can judge how anthropomorphic the lamp is for yourself:
That is pretty cute, but is it as realistic as this?