Movie Magic Makes Better Social Robots: The Overlap of Special Effects and Character Robot Engineering

Derek Carl Scherer


This essay provides a perspective on the ongoing convergence of social robots and special effects, animation, animatronics, puppetry techniques, and other entertainment technologies. In this paper, I will address the following design concepts: - Character robot design principles and concepts - Fully realized Character robots as Slaves, as a term and social artifact - The implementation of particular special effect techniques I abstract robots into six categories and focus the discussion on one of these: The Companion type. I suggest that this type of robot might benefit from being what I call a Character robot, achieving this status by possessing the following four traits: 1) Biological in its appearance 2) Clear and simple in its expression 3) Well-animated 4) Recognizable in its personality


character robot, animatronics, animation, puppets, special effects, human-robot interaction, personality, companion, slave, social robot, monster, creature, hobbit, elysium, puppetry

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