British gallery proprietor Aidan Meller expects to go some way towards answering that question with Ai-Da, who her manufacturers say will have the ability to draw individuals from sight using a pencil in her bionic hand. Meller is overseeing the final stages of her structure by engineers in Cornwall-based Engineered Arts.
“She is likely to actually be drawing and we are expecting to then build technology for her to paint,” Meller said after viewing Ai-Da’s prosthetic head being carefully brought to life by specialists individually attaching hairs to form her eyebrows.
“But as a performance artist she’ll have the ability to engage with viewers and really get messages asking those questions relating to technology now.”
The rubberised mind of Ai-Da is given lifelike features by Mike Humphrey
Her skeletal robotic mind may stand disembodied on a workbench, but her moves are very much alive.
Cameras in every one of her eyeballs recognise human attributes – she will make eye contact and follow you round the room, opening and closing her mouth as possible. Get too close and she’ll back away, blinking, as if in shock.
Ai-Da’s makers say she’ll have a”RoboThespian” body using expressive moves and she’ll talk and answer questions.
“There’s AI (artificial intelligence) operating from the computer vision which lets the robot to track faces to recognise facial attributes and also to mimic your saying,” explained Marcus Hold, Design & Production Engineer at Engineered Arts.
Ai-Da’s manufacturers are utilizing”Mesmer” life-like robot technology for her mind, and once finished she will have a mixed race look with long dark hair, silicone skin and 3D published gums and teeth.
“(Mesmer) brings with the development of applications mechanics and electronic equipment to produce a lifelike face with lifelike gestures at a tiny human sized package,” Hold said.
Ai-Da will present her inaugural exhibition”Unsecured Futures” in May at the University of Oxford, and her sketches will go on display in London in November.