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Submission + - Robotic Art selected for a Contemporary Art Prize (robohub.org)

An anonymous reader writes: Perhaps a sign of the times, Patrick Tresset, an artist who uses extensively robotics in his practice has been shortlisted for the Opline Prize. RobotHub.org reports:

Patrick Tresset, was nominated for the award this year. His latest installations focus on the relations between humans and machines. Will robot culture emerge in the interactions? What are machine aesthetics? And where will people fit into an increasingly complex technological mix?

The OPLINE Prize is the first online contemporary art award, where the audience vote for the winner out of 10 nominated artists. The winning artist receives 4,000 Euros and exhibitions. The winner also gives away a work of art to a random voter. The OPLINE Prize process in itself reflects on innovative digital culture and the engagement of the broader community in art.


Submission + - A Robot looking at humanity (vice.com)

lebijoutier writes: Artist and Roboticist Patrick Tresset, maker of the Pauls series of robots, is exhibiting Paul-IX Le Vaniteux, a new installation where a robot is seen to contemplate the futility of human existence (video). The artwork, strongly inspired by the flemish Vanitas of the XVIth century, is presented in London as part of the Creative Machine exhibition (7-14th nov, details) at Goldsmiths, University of London. Although the robot looks very similar to the previous Pauls, the computational system controlling the robot has progressively been upgraded to reach more autonomy and is now based on the idea of behaviours. Tresset's own ideas about the simulation of artistic skills are laid out in a paper titled "Artistically Skilled Embodied Agents", published in the proceedings of AISB2014 conference (pdf).

Submission + - Police officer suspended for slapping citizen for refusing a warrantless search 6

schwit1 writes: This story demonstrates why it is becoming essential for every citizen to begin recording their interactions with the police every single time.

Yesterday police were contacted in regard to a video posted online which appeared to show an inappropriate interaction between an on-duty member of the Sheriff’s Office and a civilian, resulting from a suspicious vehicle complaint in the Town of Halfmoon.

The Sheriff’s Office has identified and interviewed all parties involved in the interaction and as a result, the police officer has been suspended without pay effective immediately, pending the outcome of the investigation and possible disciplinary action.

Make sure you watch the video. It is very clear that the officer did not know he was being recorded. It is also clear to me that his behavior in this situation was not unusual, that this police officer is quite used to using violence to get his way, regardless of the law. Had the recording not existed, however, he would not have been suspended, and would not be likely to lose his job.

The recording did exist, however, which has forced the Saratoga police force to take action.

Submission + - Robot "Collaborates" With Artist to Paint Portraits (gold.ac.uk)

lebijoutier writes: This video presents the later stages of the painting process with the full process consisting of 32 stages spread across three days.
Here we see the human assistant performing the repetitive, mindless task of applying thin, uniform, transparent, slightly coloured layers. This is the only work the human does, (8 times, after every 3 stages painted by the robot). The human also waits for the paint to dry.
At each stage the robot analyses images of the subjects, and takes decisions about the location, direction and length of each brush-stroke (3 different sizes of brush are used in total).
Between each of the 32 stages, the robot takes a photo of the paintings in progress. It then uses this information to decide where and how to place the next brush-strokes.

Submission + - An interesting robot painter (vice.com)

lebijoutier writes: The robot, E-david uses "visual optimisation" to create the paintings so that it "watches itself while painting and decides independently where to add new strokes." After taking a picture of what it's going to copy it then processes it through its software so it can figure out where to add shade or light according to the image.

Submission + - How Robots Saved an Artist's Sanity (slate.com)

lebijoutier writes: from the slate article "...Tresset, for one, discovered a novel way to stay mentally healthy with the help of drugs and still pursue what was once his life’s work: He created robots that can draw portraits. Far from a mere novelty, his research is telling us more about both the creative process in humans and how we relate emotionally to machines..." "...Most of us still don’t have robots in the home, but for decades now, we’ve been waiting for machines to do our bidding. Tresset believes that it might be a good idea to imbue all personal robots with some sort of artistic skill to encourage an emotional bond—it might allow for more trust, perhaps, though you can also see how overly identifying with a machine might create some existential questions..."
In the article there is also a fascinating video of 5 of his robots sketching a single human subject...



Submission + - Actors teach game characters the subtleties of body language (wired.co.uk)

lebijoutier writes: From wired.co.uk
A computer scientist is working with actors to engineer an algorithm that recognises and reacts to subtle social behaviours and body movements — a system that could eventually be used to create a truly interactive gaming experience.
Marco Gillies of Goldsmiths College told Wired.co.uk that he launched the project with the founding premise that "games shouldn't be designed by experts in programming, but by experts in movement". While companies like NaturalMotion use motion capture technology to create animated characters with realistic-looking movements, Gillies and his team are focusing on developing characters that recognise subtle movements and can relate to these in a natural way. The technology is aimed at improving game characters' reactions to players and to create more emotionally complex gaming experiences, but it could also have future applications in social gaming and robotics...

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