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A Guitar So Good It Plays Itself

1 min read

Human musicians, watch out. A band of New York City robot makers has begun building musical instruments that play themselves. The creations of the League of Electronic Musical Urban Robots recently performed at an art exhibition, including GuitarBot [right], pictured with one of its designers and the league’s founder, Eric Singer.

Singer, who built the robot with Kevin Larke and David Bianciardi and grant assistance from the Rockefeller Foundation (New York City), told IEEE Spectrum that GuitarBot took two years to build, but in the process the league ”developed a lot of robotic technology we can repurpose” for new robots.

Singer’s motivation for building the robot was threefold: ”First, I’m a terrible guitarist and I wanted to build something better than me. Second, I wanted to extend the options for composers beyond what a human being is capable of.” And the third reason? Singer grins. ”Because it’s cool.”

To experience the coolness, you can listen to the GuitarBot perform and view it at https://lemurbots.org/audiovideo.html.

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