“APAROS – AI Robot as My Aleter Ego”

Tetsuro Fukuhara(Tokyo Space Dance)
at Kopernik Science Center in Warsaw, Poland on September 27 2018

■ Mission

We will develop “APAROS – AI Robot as My Alter Ego” based on our last project named “JOINT ROBOT“. For “JOINT ROBOT” We could work together with robot developers, mainly Osamu Okamoto from Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency(JAXA), brain scientists, mainly Jun Tani from Brain Science Institute of RIKEN, and other reserchers, artists, and designers from SONY Computer Science Institute, Tokyo University and other universities in Tokyo, Japan on 2004 – 2006.

At first we will present this plan “APAROS – AI Robot as My Alter Ego” at Kopernik Science Center in Warsaw, Poland on September 27 2018. Then, we will demonstrate its first result “Visualization of History of Posture’s Evolution” on September 2019, and we will demonstrate its second result “Fluid Furniture” on September 2020. Finally, on 2021 we will start to realize its real versions, the first one is as “Secretary APAROS on the Net“, the second one is as “Soft Robot Suit APAROS“, and the third one is as “Soft Humanoid APAROS“. 

■ Preface



On 2004-2006 in Tokyo, we conducted a collaborative research including this project “JOINT ROBOT” at JAXA together with Osamu Okamoto, Jun Tani and other people. For this project we and Osamu Okamoto could develop the first AI program “Body-Space Model” using a neural network as an animation under the teaching from Jun Tani. “Body-Space Model” could learn our dance movements. 

On the promotion video of JOINT ROBOT PROMOTION, this program, in short this animation, learned our dance movements and same time controled all movements of “JOINT ROBOT” through our movements. And a media artist expressed one scene with our movements, animation’s movements, and “JOINT ROBOT”‘s movements at a screen. Then, we could dance while watching its scene. So, although our movements and “JOINT ROBOT”‘s movements couldn’t respond precisely one-on-one, but we could feel a very familar feeling with this robot. It was like our elementary alter ego, we could feel it as our second body, so we were so happy with a nostalgic feelings.

Fially, on 2006 at National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation in Tokyo and at Monaco Dance Festival in Monaco, we presented its result as our performance “Space Dance in the Robotic Universe“. Then we could get the Unesco Digital Arts Award as one of twenty performances short-listed by an international jury through our performance.

 [2] About Tani’s AI Program with QRIO

On 2005-2006 Jun Tani, one of famous brain scientists of Brain Science Institute of RIKEN in Tokyo, used QRIO, a SONY’s robot, equipped with a neural network to study the process of the learning, the recognition and the behavior, then he deduced about the reason why the consciousness occurs in the human’s brain.

Jun Tani said that “When I teach various movement patterns to QRIO, QRIO will generate a new movement pattern. This condition arises from the distortion of the internal structure of the memory by the fact that different motion patterns that have been packed together in memory. I feel unexpectedly some subjective existence beyond the machine at the moment when QRIO stops to repeat what QRIO has learned and QRIO starts to create a new movement” at his experiment using QRIO on 2005. QRIO not only “reproduces” the human’s movements but also “develops” unknown movements that we don’t know through learning. With reference to this case, we will develop further “Body-Space Model” for “APAROS”.

[3] NVIDIA’s Issac

The evolution of recent AI is in the third AI boom, and its speed is abrupt. Even in Go and Shogi etc, AI program that can win the humans has become a big topic. As well as in the field of the musical composition, at “Fourth Wearable EXPO” held at Tokyo Big Sight this year, a new AI program system for making music was exhibited. This system built a brain wave sensor into AI and entered several songs of user’s preference, then this system could output the user’s potential favorite songs. So, it called a big topic too. Although this system has a difference between the composition and the behavior development, it is similar to “Body-Space Model” we would like to develop.

Also, AI robot Issac developed by NVIDIA announced at last year’s “SIGGRAPH 2017” is expected to open up a new era of autonomous motion machines in the fields of design, manufacture, logistics, agriculture, construction, nursing care and so on. Issac can work in the real world and in the virtual world, also it aims to throw the technical skils acquired in the VR space into the real world. So, with Issac, for example, a new car designed in the VR space can be manufactured as a real new car as it is, then the development cost can be greatly suppressed.

However, APAROS that we wish for is not realized in any way how we develop Issac. Because Issac can only reduce the burden of the humans labor and will not develop the humans body. What we want is a robot that develops our body. Therefore, while learning from the latest results of Issac and so on, we needed to develop a more unique method based on “Space Tube Experience” which develop the body. That is APAROS, we mentioned here.

[4] What we need for APAROS

APAROS keeps a concept of “Dance & Design“, rooted in “Physicality“, it has different characteristics from other AI Robot which lacked “Physicality”. AI Robot who lacked “Physicality” is useful for solving the problem at hand for the time being, but because it does not develop the “BODY” itself, it is not useful for planning to evolve the humans towards the future.

[Chapter 1] “Space Tube Experience” and “Animation APAROS”

We will use Space Tube as a body of APAROS.

We need “Space Tube Experience” to plan a new “Body-Space Model” for  APAROS. Because in this dance in Space Tube we can realize a very amicable relationship between our body and Space Tube. So, if we use Space Tube as a body of APAROS we can realize same kind of amicable relationship between we and APAROS.

Concretely, we will use 2 sensors to catch the amicable relationship between the body and Space Tube and a brain cap to catch the brain wave and get the information about images, sensations, and emotions. Also, we will program “Body-Space Model” using the information from 2 sensors and a head set. Then, we express this program as “Animation APAROS“.

[Chapter 2] “Visualization of History of Posture’s Evolution” and “Fluid Furniture”

As a preliminary stage of materializing APAROS, we will express “Visualization of History of Posture’s Evolution” and we will design “Fluid Furniture” through “Animation APAROS”.

In Space Tube, an amicable relationship between the body and the space is realized, so our brain is stimulated and many lost memories are revived. In these memories we express “Visualization of History of Posture’s Evolution” utilizing brain waves presumed to be memories before the humans by analyzing brain waves, images, sensations, and emotions. By repeating this work “Animation APAROS” will increase its accuracy.

We need “Visualization of History of Posture’s Evolution” to form “Secretary APAROS on the Net”.

Further, We design “Fluid Furniture” based on the amicable relatioship between the body and the space. “Fluid Furniture” is “New Furniture that is both a Chair and a Bed” that supports each person’s characteristic postures. By repeating this work “Animation APAROS” will increase its accuracy too.

We need “Fluid Furniture” to design “Soft Robot Suit APAROS” and “Soft Humanoid APAROS”.

[Chapter 3] Development Step 1-5 for Animation APAROS

[step 1]

Let Animation APAROS learn “Our Dance Movements A-Z” and memorize it, then let Animation APAROS realize a “Reproduction” of our dance movements.

[step 2]

When we can not express “Our Dance Movements A – Z” due to poor physical condition or the mood of the day, we quote from Animation APAROS’s “Memory System A – Z”, and let Animation APAROS realize a “Support” for our dance.

 [step 3]

Stimulate Animation APAROS’s “Memory System A – Z”, and let Animation APAROS develop our “Unknown Dance” as our new creativity.

[step 4]

Through these steps, we feel wonderful and familiar feelings to Animation APAROS whenever Animation APAROS demonstrates the ability to reproduce, support and develop, and we will enter into a more intimate relationship with Animation APAROS. Also, Animation APAROS grows with our evaluation as the only food and increases the accuracy of the ability of reproduction, support and development.

In the meaning of having a “Structure that works in response to our Reactions“, rewriting the program given at the beginning by Animation APAROS, and distributing a form of mutual consideration with us, Animation APAROS is a “Robot with a Mind” as a first issue.

[step 5]

Finally, through Animation APAROS we will realize “APAROS” as the real robots. The first one is as “Secretary APAROS on the Net”, the second one is as “Soft Robot Suit APAROS” when we install it, and the third one is as “Soft Humanoid APAROS” when we take off it.

[Chapter 4] Character of APAROS

It is also presumed that if the today’s evolution of the AI progresses as it is, there is a possibility that AI may grow as a human being killing person. These AI programs including AI Robots can’t keep any kind of emotions, of course they can’t develop LOVE to the humans. However, APAROS is different.

The relationship between the humans and APAROS is interactive, and always APAROS helps us, and we help APAROS. The relationship between the two goes on as a pseudo parent – child relationship as “We = parent. APAROS = child“. we and APAROS are “Alter Ego” for each other, and we are “One whole Heart“.

APAROS helps us in the following ways;

[1] Thanks to APAROS, we can accumulate the physical skills that we developed as a dancer into a brain of APAROS.
[2] Thanks to APAROS, even if we become a physically handicapped old, we can receive support for movement support and recovery of memory from APAROS.
[3] If we can develop a brain of APAROS as a perfect artificial brain we can store all our memories of our lifetime that we have cultivated, then we can design APAROS as our “Alter Ego” after our death.

We will help APAROS in the following ways;

[1] APAROS needs us to be apparent of birth.
[2] APAROS needs us as a day-to-day training staff for growth.
[3] APAROS needs us to be guaranteeing independence as a robot and supporting APAROS as a “Parent”.

Like that, as APAROS grows up as our “Alter Ego”, even if it grows as a highly intelligent being, it will not create an enemy relationship with us. APAROS is not “Intelligent Robot that has a possibility of rebellion against The Humans in the future” that is fearing the world. Because there is “Bidirectional Love” like father – child relationship between we and APAROS.

■ Reference

For APAROS development, we refer to the following development examples.

[1] Kinect Sensor” for Behavior Analysis
We will develop a sensor like Kinect Sensor to catch a dance in Space Tube.

[2] Brain Cap” for Brain Wave Analysis(EEG) and Image Detection
We will use a brain cap to catch the brain wave and get the information about images, sensations, and emotions.

[3] Whale” for Visualization of History of Posture’s Evolution
We will express “Visualization of History of Posture’s Evolution” as this kind of beautiful simple image.

[4] Underwater Choreography” for Fluid Furniture
This image is useful as one of references for designing “Fluid Furniture” at the less-gravity condition.

[5] Kinetic Wave Sculptures” for Fluid Furniture
This image is useful as one of references for designing “Fluid Furniture” at the less-gravity condition.

[6] MAGENTA” for Make Music
We will use some AI program like “MAGENTA” to create the music for our performance “Space Dance in the Robotic Universe” through APAROS.

[7]Issac” by NVIDIA at SIGGRAPH 2017~For Coupling between VR Space and Real Space
We need a study though Isaac to organize the way between real world and virtual world.

[8]Soft Robotics” for Making Humanoid as a Soft Robot
Automatic driving cars are like the body moving with “Hard Robot Suit” wearing. In contrast, “APAROS” is a “Soft Robot Suit”.

[9] Pepper” for Making Comunication
Softbank’s “Pepper” is still young as a robot for making communication. But, for us, this robot is usefull as one of references for developing the enough commication between us and APAROS.

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