Bot world's Zubin Mehta

Updated: Feb 09, 2020, 07:51 IST | Agencies |

'Bouncy' humanoid shocks audience, as it conducts a human orchestra in Sharjah

Imaging/Uday Mohite
Imaging/Uday Mohite

A Humanoid music conductor wowed listeners at a performance in Sharjah, when it effortlessly guided a symphony orchestra's players through Keiichiro Shibuya's opera, Scary Beauty. The robot, Android Alter 3, gesticulated with its arms, bounced up and down and rotated, during the performance. What's more, it even sang every now and then. "The android itself moves according to its own will," remarked Kotobuki Hikaru, the technician behind the musical bot.

Shibuya is a composer from Japan who feels that robots can be extremely useful in everyday life. But he also believes that it is up to humans to determine how to use artificial intelligence in a manner that will facilitate the human experience. "This work is a metaphor of the relationship between humans and technology. Sometimes the android will get crazy, and human orchestras have to follow. But sometimes humans can cooperate very comfortably," he said to the New York Post. Shibuya said that the AI technology that is available right now is not perfect, which is why it's interesting to see how humans and robots can come together to create art. While he composed the music, the bot is in charge of the tempo and volume of the live show.

Android Alter 3 at the symphony orchestra performance in Sharjah
Android Alter 3 at the symphony orchestra performance in Sharjah

The audience that watched the performance had a mixed response. "I think this is a very exciting idea. We came to see how it looks like," said Anna Kovacevic. Another member from the audience said that he preferred a human conductor to the android one.

A rubbery stitch

Japanese art student knits rubber bands to create innovative clothes

A rubbery stitch

ART student Rie Sakamoto has designed an incredible line of clothing made entirely from knitted rubber bands. Sakamoto, who will be graduating from Tama Art University in Tokyo, decided to focus on the humble, but versatile stationery for her final thesis this year. Sakamoto used thousands of brown rubber bands and knitted them to make dresses, bolero jackets and even boots. The project was inspired by the realisation that rubber bands have so many uses other than what meets the eye. Apart from its functional side, the beauty and the elasticity of the material appealed to her. Her clothes were on display, as part of a group exhibition of graduating students. While the exhibition has ended, one can track her experiments on her Twitter account.

A rubbery stitch

Pics/@sakamoto_entame, Twitter

Dil hain chhota sa

Dil hain chhota sa

Tiny tot, Veda Agarwal, won the hearts of many when she joined her father, Madhav Agarwal, on stage and started crooning the song, Chhoti Si Aasha. The three-year old's mother shared a video of her performance on Twitter, where people have viewed it over 1.7 lakh times. Pic/@Meghamadhav21, Twitter

Heartwarming ad supports trans rights

Heartwarming ad supports trans rights

In its latest commercial, Starbucks UK used its 'name-writing on the cup' tradition to support the LGBTQIA+ community. The 89-second ad shows that the only person to respect a trans teen's chosen name (and therefore, their true self) is a Starbucks employee.

You can win big if you get tyre off croc's neck

Officials in the city of Paulu, Indonesia are offering a reward of an unspecified amount of money to the person who manages to remove a motorcycle tyre from the neck of a crocodile. The 13-foot-long crocodile has been spotted wearing the tyre around its neck since 2016 and authorities are worried that it may end up choking the crocodile.

Couple attends own wedding via livestream

Couple attends own wedding via livestream

A couple, identified only as Mr and Mrs Yu, who recently visited a village in the same province as Wuhan, the epicentre of the Coronavirus epidemic, decided to livestream themselves to their own wedding. They were quarantined, so as to keep them from spreading the dreaded virus.

Erykah to sell incense that smells like vagina

Erykah to sell incense that smells like vagina

R&B legend and four-time Grammy winner Erykah Badu has announced her decision to release an incense called Badu's P***y. It will smell like her vagina and will be available on her own soon-to-launch online store. "I took lots of pairs of my panties, cut them up into little pieces and burned them. Even the ash is part of it," Badu said. PIC/ @erykahbadu, Instagram

Poison for dinner?

Poison for dinner?

A green tree frog miraculously survived after eating one of the world's most poisonous snakes, a Coastal Taipan, in Australia recently. The frog was bitten multiple times, while trying to devour the snake alive. Pic/Snake Take Away, Facebook

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