For sale: Your robot clone

Japan's Kokoro is offering absurdly vain people the chance to order their own android clone for just $225,000 apiece. Only two bots available, so act now!

Tim Hornyak
Crave freelancer Tim Hornyak is the author of "Loving the Machine: The Art and Science of Japanese Robots." He has been writing about Japanese culture and technology for a decade. E-mail Tim.
Tim Hornyak

Japanese robot maker Kokoro, best known for its Actroid line of ultra-lifelike androids, will make robot clones of people in a special limited-time offer.

Osaka University roboticist Hiroshi Ishiguro (right) and his android clone, Geminoid. Tim Hornyak

The New Year promotion is being offered via select department stores in Japan. People willing to pay about $225,000 can have themselves recreated in robot form, with their robot clone having exactly the same face, hair, eyes, and body.

Kokoro will also model the buyer's voice, facial expressions, and upper-body movements to create the most lifelike doppelganger possible.

The Actroid and Geminoid androids are powered by a quiet air servo system that moves their upper bodies. They cannot walk.

Both are based on real people--one version of Actroid was based on a Japanese newscaster, and Geminoid is based on Osaka University roboticist Hiroshi Ishiguro.

Kokoro is only offering to make two robot clones. If more than two orders are received, the lucky buyers will be selected by lottery.

(Via Pink Tentacle)