Inbetweens: Robot Animation

Boing Boing posted today about a robot dancing competition, and as I watched the video it started me thinking… Animation is currently redefining itself with new computer technology; and because of this, the job description of “animator” is undergoing big changes. Someday, perhaps people who read this blog will end up animating robots! It’s not that strange of an idea. Walt Disney pioneered the idea of computer controlled robots with the birds in the Tiki Room at Disneyland, and later with Great Moments With Mr. Lincoln.

One Response to “Inbetweens: Robot Animation”

  1. GW says:

    Actually, I am reading this blog and I do have an idea for robotic animation, though not exactly in the matter you're thinking of. I'd looked online to see if anybody had come up with the same idea, and I stumbled upon one example. It was apparently discussed at the IEEE in 1995, though I'm not sure if that applies to animatronics or frame by frame animation, since you had to pay to read the paper where it was mentioned.

    My idea for moving robots frame by frame is fairly simple. The basics would probably be something like sending jolts of electricity to move mechanical parts. A jolt of electricity could cause a motor to spin, which would move something like the knee joint of a leg. Also, I'm interested to see how machines and hand movement can work in unison.

    Of the things I found on the web, most of it's simply computer animation of robots, animatronics or something else like that. There's many possible directions and a large number of things I'd like to explore.

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