Robot Characters? Disney Research reveals robot suited for ‘life-life interactions with people’

We all know that things are always evolving where Disney is concerned. This story struck me as interesting, and I wanted to share with you. Can you imagine, meeting your favorite characters at a Disney Park, but having it be a robot instead of an actual person? Sounds odd, right? I’m not sure what to think. Here’s the scoop from WESH News here in Orlando~


A robot that is so precise it can thread a needle may one day entertain guests at Walt Disney World.

Disney Research, a network of laboratories supporting the Walt Disney Company, released a a video last week showing off its “hybrid hydrostatic transmission and human-safe haptic telepresence robot.” That’s a fancy way of saying a human-operated robot that uses air and water lines for movement.

Disney has not released any plans to introduce the robots at its parks, but a release from Disney Research says the robots are suited for “life-life interactions with people.”

Here’s how it works:

Cameras mounted on the robot provide live video to an operator wearing a set of 3-D goggles. In real-time, the operator’s movements are mimicked by the robot. The hydraulic and pneumatic lines give the robot such a delicate touch, it can pick up an egg without breaking it.

“They have an incredible life-like nature, offering a combination of small mass, high speed and precise motion not seen before,” Vice President of Disney Research Jessica Hodgins said. “For now, the robot is remotely controlled by a human operator, but we would expect the same level of mechanical performance once the motions are automated.”

In the video released by Disney Research, the robot plays the xylophone, handles an egg, threads a needle, catches a balloon and interacts with a little girl.

Robots controlled by humans are nothing new. The innovative part of the Disney Research robot is its ability to mirror human motion and its fine control.

So what are your thought on this new technology? Be sure to tell us about it in the comments!

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