A group at the Institute for Cognitive Systems (ICS) at TU München, and the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST, in Japan), has produced a talking robot face; a Mask-bot, which is able to instantaneously create — from a photograph — a video projection onto a 3-D surface. The mask is projected from the rear, apparently making it more realistic than other attempts. It also works in daylight, utilizes  a complex array of mechanical parts to make it flexible, and is custom-built to specifications.

Video conferencing is an ideal application.

The Mask-bot shifts its ‘head’ and raises its eyebrows as you speak to it, as if it understands what you’re saying (so far, the creators believe, it does not).

Photo credit: TU München