"We heart robots"
will start after this message from our sponsors.
CNET News Video
CNET News Video
We heart robots
[ Music ]
>>I'm Kara Tsuboi, CnetNews.com. The term robot was first used in a 1923 Czech play. Ever since then the world has been fascinated by these humanoid figures. This exhibition at the San Jose Museum of Art takes a look at the evolution of this cultural icon.
>>I feel that robots are almost like a symbol that we can use to project our feelings about technology onto.
>>That's why curator JoAnne Northrup calls this exhibit both a nostalgic and futuristic as it examines the way bots can serve as a surprisingly accurate cultural barometer.
>>In a way they serve as avatars where we project into the robot the things that we feel about our society and the world we live in. I think we just like to create things in our own image and it's like we're in a way playing God. We're creating a creature that can work and do things for us and we're in control of it. Or, are we?
>>The collection spans the last 50 years. It starts with this piece, H.C. Westerman's evil new war god SOB.
>>And he thought of the war machine as like a robot that's out of control.
>>Now it is possible to tour this exhibit and appreciate the art on a purely esthetic level.
[ Music ]
>>But the most interesting pieces will challenge your notions of artificial intelligence.
>>It really is sort of eyes on a pole, but it has somehow this human-like presence, like a totem. We see our presence reflected in her eyes.
>>He's created some software that expresses emotions and you can see those emotions mapped out on the projection on the wall behind. There are a variety of interactions that are possible just between Neil and Iona when they're here alone, but when someone enters the room then that changes.
>>For JoAnne's research into robots, which included watching every single robot-themed movie she could find, she's arrived at some fascinating conclusions on different culture's perceptions of these humanoid forms.
>>I would say that there's definitely though a western viewpoint which says that be careful what you do with technology because it might turn against you. I think that the Japanese perspective, in particular, is that robots are here to help us and they're going to make our lives easier.
>>Guests to this museum can tour the art in an innovative way by using their own or borrowed iPod touches as their private multimedia tour guide.
>>This is the home screen and so you'll see several links and these are exhibitions that we have or you can explore our permanent collection.
>>However you choose to enjoy the exhibit, JoAnne hopes this collection will spark a dialog about what robots mean in a modern world.
>>To dig deeper into our relationship with technology and get us to think about it from an intellectual viewpoint.
>>But no matter how deep you dig, there's one bottom line.
>>Everyone loves robots.
>>I know I do. I'm Kara Tsuboi, CnetNews.com.
Sonos and Roku considering becoming better friends
Go inside Facebook's election war room
Netflix proves it's still growing like crazy
Paul Allen passes away at 65
Google says it won't work with Defense Department on developing...
Google says China is important to explore -- even if it means...
Twitter CEO believes platform contributes to filter bubbles