/ Voices WYHIWYS, a mash-up special robots by Damien Bourniquel for Makery. (screenshot). © DR

WYHIWYS 6: We are the Robots


Damien Bourniquel is an artist, glitcher, creative hacker and member of Blackboxe (hackerspace, Paris). For Makery, he created WYHIWYS (What You Hear Is What You See), referencing the famous WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get), where sound becomes visual and image is made resounding.

We are the Robots, sang Kraftwerk in 1977, launching electronic music at the same time as was growing the fascination for robotics, animatronics and everything that would potentially draw machines closer to humans. From the Youtubers’ point of view, the robotic revolution comes in all sorts. On the fascination side, we love (and not only in Japan) that robots mimic humans: they play football (the match is much more languid than with Zlatan Ibrahimović), they dance, play the trumpet or form an orchestra

Makers do not lack imagination and offer snake like robots, clumsy robots distributing tomato sauce or robots of epic battles. As for researchers, they design nursing robots (baby seal clones), when artists toy with the ambiguity of feelings with these bots almost like humans (Jordan Wolfson’s Female Figure, 2014). Obviously military research has an important part to play.

We put on a half-faked smile when seeing the military cyborg biker presented to Poutine in January, whereas the hordes of LS3 legged squad support system (first named Alphadog and BidDog by Boston Dynamics) rather make you shudder.

Find the previous WYHIWYS columns

Damien Bourniquel’s website

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