Soseki Nastume, a famous Japanese author who wrote stories like Kokoro and I Am a Cat, is being revived as a robot so he can teach.
Japan’s most famous novelist is set to return to his alma mater and teach -100 years after his death.
Soseki Natsume is being recreated as an android by Nishogakusha University Graduate School, and will be programmed to read material out loud and give lectures.
Created in a sitting posture, the robot will be 130 centimeters high and built using 3D scans of a death mask and vintage photos.
Nastume, who is famous for Kokoro and I Am a Cat, attended the university in 1881 where he studied Chinese poetry and Confucianism.
To celebrate the institutes 140th anniversary, a team of students is making a ‘Soseki Android’.
The group plans to explore Nastume’s life and gather information regarding his physical appearance and size for a closely accurate robot.
They have been given access to a large collection of photos and works by the major newspaper Asahi Shumbun – a former employer of Nastume, reports RocketNews24.
Prof. Hiroshi Ishiguro of Osaka University, who is well known in the field of androids, is in charge of supervising the project.
During a press conference held in Tokyo, Ishiguro said, ‘I will integrate various things we know about Soseki into the android and will try to reproduce his personality as closely as possible.’
The robot’s voice will be created after analysing the voice of his grandson, Prof. Fusanosuke Natsume of Gakushuin University.
Fusanosuke Natsume said, ‘Since [Soseki is] a human being, it is better that he is smiling.’
Nastume was born in 1867, with the name Natsume Kinnosuke,to a family of civil servants who put him up for adoption at two years old.
He assumed the pseudonym name of Soseki, which means stubborn in Chinese, during 1886.
In 1914, he wrote his masterpiece Kokoro, which is a required reading in Japanese schools today and is has been called the Don Quijote or Romeo and Juliet of its time.
Nastume isn’t the only legend being brought back from the dead, one firm has been able to recreate deceased legends using holograms.
He passed away almost 20 years ago, but now one firm plans to bring the late Notorious B.I.G. back from the grave.
ARHT Media secured the rights to the holographic image of the deceased east coast rapper and says it will give fans another chance to see him perform on-stage and in music videos.
Called ‘HumaGrams’, the technology produces 3D interactive digital humans, which can be scaled to fit in a venue of any size.
HumaGrams are neither volumetric nor light-based, meaning they are not technically holograms.
They are 2-way interactive, so the audience can interact with the projection.
ARTH, short for Augmented Reality Holographic Technology, partnered with ByStorm Entertainment, who handles the late rappers estates, alongside singer Faith Evans and Biggie’s mother Voletta Wallace, in order to reproduce Christopher Wallace as an interactive hologram, reports Billboard.com.
‘We have a very sophisticated transmission technology for beaming these digital humans through the public Internet to literally any point on the planet,’ says ARHT CEO Paul Duffy.
‘These digital humans can scale to any size of venue so it can be in a window display, your living room or it could be in a 50,000-seat arena for a real-time delivery and display of this human hologram, that we call ‘HumaGrams.’
The technology is brought to life with the ARHT platform, a project system that creates a form of 3D image without glasses.
The team creates the ‘digital humans’ by working closely with existing footage, to sculpt a person down to the specific mannerisms.
Or, fictional characters can also be created using 360-degree recording techniques.
HumaGrams are then ‘beamed’ through the internet onto projection planes to create photorealistic stereoscopic 3D forms.
This means that, while it creates the appearances of 3D, they don’t actually have a full 360 form.
The HumaGrams come to life as single- or multiplane projections, or on a flatscreen TV.
With the ARHTengine, a HumaGram can track, manage and measure all of the interaction with its viewer.
The operating system allows users to customize the interaction between the ‘hologram’ and viewer.
The first appearance will be alongside his widow, singer Faith Evans, as they perform ‘The King &I’.