Watch a robot conduct an Italian orchestra and a famous tenor

Robot that can solve the Rubik's cube and thread a needle conducts Italian orchestra in world first

Robot that can solve the Rubik's cube and thread a needle conducts Italian orchestra in world first

Anxious about robots taking your job? In other words, the robot can move its arms in the appropriate ways at the appropriate times within the aria, as previously instructed by a human conductor. Its fluid movements are similar to those of a human, which is why ABB chose to give YuMi a musical test during this week's First International Festival of Robotics in Pisa. It has no legs, no face, no fancy features.

YuMi, a dual-armed robot designed by ABB, accompanied Italian tenor Andrea Bocelli and conducted the Lucca Philharmonic Orchestra at a gala event in Pisa's Teatro Verdi Tuesday evening.

Robot that can solve the Rubik's cube and thread a needle conducts Italian orchestra in world first

Just days after Japan introduced its first robot priest, Italy envisaged a robot taking the role of a conductor for a premier orchestra that was unveiled at the First International Festival of Robotics.

Yumi's smooth, human-like movements are a big improvement on its Honda-built "rival" Asimo, which conducted the Detroit Symphony Orchestra in 2008. The team worked with Andrea Colombini, the conductor of the Lucca Philharmonic Orchestra, who claims "it was very hard to train".

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"It was not love at first sight", Colombini said. "At the start I kept getting wound up because it kept getting stuck, and when the robot gets stuck it takes 25 to 30 minutes to reset it", Colombini told AFP. In order to make the event a roaring success, YuMi had to undergo rigorous training. He said the robot's performance was based upon programming, followed by the fine-tuning to synchronize its movement with the music. While YuMi is able to follow a strict pre-programmed set of movements, it can not improvise or interact with the musicians, according to the AFP article.

According to Colombini, YuMi should supplement or assist human conductors rather than replace them.

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