I’d like to build a talking animatronic Beethoven bust for my music room, and don’t even know where to begin, how to get started?


I’d like to build a talking animatronic Beethoven bust for my music room, and don’t even know where to begin, how to get started?

You can start by checking out my Meta Guide webpages, “100 Best Animatronic Head Videos” [1], “100 Best Robot Head Videos” [2], “100 Best Hanson Robotics Videos” [3], and “Talking Heads (Draft)” [4].

There are two aspects to this project, internal and external.  In fact, I usually recommend people create first a virtual talking head, for instance in a virtual world, such as Second Life.  Second Life is really a great testbed for protoyping robots.  A virtual prototype basically covers all of your internal workings.  Later, you can apply the virtual prototype to an external or robotic talking head.  For this, you can go with a generic robotic head, and simply dress it up after the fact as the character of your choice.

So-called rear projection talking heads seem to be the current favorite; however, there are also “virtual manequins” [5] available, though perhaps something of a compromise.  To do this well is actually quite a big and potentially costly project; however, I believe that you can achieve satisfaction with just the virtual prototype phase, and get a much clearer picture of what you want and how to get there.

[1] https://www.meta-guide.com/home/talking-head/100-best-animatronic-head-videos

[2] https://www.meta-guide.com/home/talking-head/100-best-robot-head-videos

[3] https://www.meta-guide.com/home/about/videography/100-best-hanson-robotics-videos

[4] https://www.meta-guide.com/home/talking-head

[5] https://www.meta-guide.com/home/about/videography/best-virtual-mannequin-videos

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