CNET
United Faces of Ameca

That Robot With the Super Creepy Facial Expressions Is Back, and Yikes

byVictor Tangermann
Jan 6
CNET

Yep, it's still as weird as ever.

Only in Ameca

UK-based robotics company Engineered Arts made a huge splash last month with a teaser video of its humanoid robot, with many eerily uncanny expressions, which went viral on social media.

Even the likes of Elon Musk commented on the video, noting just how unsettling it was to watch the robot’s perfectly executed impressions.

Now, we finally get to see more of the robot in action. Engineered Arts took its robot called Ameca — it’s a “she” according to its owners, by the way — to this year’s CES convention in Las Vegas, and had it sit down for an interview with CNET.

The experience was just as uncanny as we expected, and also made it clear that the extraordinary bot is not the result of CGI trickery.

Advertisement

Uncanny Valley Girl

Ameca really looks like she was yanked straight out of a sci-fi movie.

“We’ve all seen it in the movies, we’ve all seen ‘I, Robot’ and ‘AI Artificial Intelligence,'” Morgan Roe, Engineered Arts’ director of operations, told CNET via Zoom. “And suddenly, that’s real.”

While Ameca herself didn’t talk during the interview, the humanoid robot appeared to react to what Roe was saying, as if a somewhat over-expressive human of flesh and blood was actually standing next to him.

Roe also explained that Ameca wasn’t meant to visually mimic an actual human being, noting that the team intentionally “pulled it backwards out of the uncanny valley” by giving it a deliberately robotic look.

Advertisement

Use Case Expression

So what will Ameca actually do?

“This is mainly probably service robotics,” Roe told CNET, noting that it would take “say ten to 20 years” for Ameca to mingle with real humans.

Roe also explained how the robot can track people’s faces using two cameras in each of its eyes.

It’s a beautiful example of humanoid robotics being taken to its logical conclusion, and an impressive feat of engineering that shows just how far the technology has come.

Advertisement

Just don’t stare into Ameca’s eyes for too long or you might just get fooled into thinking she’s real.

READ MORE: Ameca the robot is more human (and haunting) than I ever imagined [CNET]

More on the robot: New Video Shows Robot With Terrifyingly Realistic Facial Expressions


Care about supporting clean energy adoption? Find out how much money (and planet!) you could save by switching to solar power at UnderstandSolar.com. By signing up through this link, Futurism.com may receive a small commission.

Advertisement

Share This Article

Copyright ©, Camden Media Inc All Rights Reserved. See our User Agreement, Privacy Policy and Data Use Policy. The material on this site may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, cached or otherwise used, except with prior written permission of Futurism. Fonts by Typekit and Monotype.