Tag Archives: Animatronic

Entertaining while Educating

 

ALL ABOARD!

animatronic conductor

Everybody is getting information faster, trying to absorb it, learn from it, but it can be too much! With attention spans shrinking it becomes very difficult to help somebody learn history without poking them with a stick every five seconds.

We at Custom Entertainment Solutions do not endorse poking people with sticks.

Instead, we open creative, hungry minds to new information using animatronics!

The City of Belton, in conjunction with the local history museum housed in a 100-year-old train station, wanted to bring in more guests to view their railroad exhibit and assist in the learning of local history.

animatronic train conductor

For example, the history of trains in the US is vast and contains many details that train aficionados hold dear. To tell a few minutes of detailed history to a child can be a challenge. But to have an animatronic robot tell it they become fascinated! Everybody is entertained. The best part: the story teller (animatronic) always tells it perfectly!

robotic train conductor

 From the museum, “We are thrilled with our animatronic robot. It was so precious to see the children making him come to life with the touch of a button.  It scared quite a few until their parents assured them that he was perfectly harmless.  You can see the confusion and trepidation on some of their faces, but they definitely warmed up to him after a few minutes. There were older people, too, who were enthralled by him and listened to all the stories he told.  One older gentleman, as he walked away, said, “Well, I’ll be!  That’s amazing!” Many of the older folks also recognized Paul Brown’s voice from his radio and TV newscasts, so they had an added connection to the robot.  He felt, to them, as if he were an old friend.”

You can see him in the new museum HERE

animatronic robot

This is a custom animatronic train conductor, but…

What would you like?

 

 

The Animatronic Trade Show Handshake

 

Back in the 1980s and 90s, trade shows were all the rage for everything from retail cleaning products to medical devices. But let’s face it, even though such shows are still being used around the country, they are dropping in attendance about the industry in question. If you’re a salesperson, you need something special to get the attention of potential customers.

We Suggest Animatronics!

We all know this is a technology driven world where customers are excited by new gadgets and new ways of doing things. You might not be able to spruce up your presentation of the latest broom handles using a computer slide show and some creative music. How many times have your prospects walked right by your $$$ booth? You WILL get their attention with a robot hand that demonstrates your new broom and then offers a firm, businesslike handshake.

Imagine the sort of traffic you’d drive to your booth if everyone knew they could shake the hand of a robot. With a little creative programming that hand could also serve coffee, offer a business card, or any number of tricks to excite the eager crowd. And once you have their attention, you can use the custom animatronics to demonstrate your product or service.

animatronic hand

More than Just Hands

We used the example of the robot hand because it is easy to put into context. But you don’t have to settle for a hand if something else would be more appropriate. There are custom animatronic heads, feet, and complete Custom Androids. There are even custom robotic devices that look nothing like people or their parts. We make whatever you would like.

Whatever product or service you are trying to promote, there’s a way to do so using animatronics. Simply let us know what you would like for your booth or walk around display. We can do the rest. We can design something specific to your needs.

Animatronics Make Great Promoters

Animatronic are great as promotional tools because they stimulate the imagination. I remember even as a child a relatively dumb prop of a robot (it didn’t even move) in front of a theater. You bet I dragged my parents in to see the film. AND we kept going back to that theater, even when the removed the robot display…

Think of it this way, there are three things that act as the primary drivers of sales: Shiny things. I mean that the emotional response, ALWAYS, will beat any technical information about your product. Believe me, I used to sell Computational Fluid Dynamics software! Some of the most physics-heavy software there is. And the software had an interface only PhD’s would appreciate. BUT I made hot, fun, crazy images from the post that would WOW people into stopping. That is all I need, prospects stopping. Conversations starting. DONE. Scanned. Distribute to the regional salesperson. 80% of the time it led to a sell (depending on that salesperson’s talent 😉 ) . STOP THEM. I threw foam boomerangs for a while, no kidding, and hit the ones I knew were high level prospects. Not cool, but it worked-ish. If I had an animatronic that had something to do with what I was trying to sell then the ROI would be done in 2 tradeshows.

So, have we convinced you of the promotional viability of an animatronic device? If so, we’d love to work together and find out how we can build your revenue stream. If you have a trade show coming up this year then it’s time to start thinking about your booth right now.

Let’s get together and build you your very own animatronic trade show “handshake”. You’ll be the talk of the show long after it’s over.

How Do They Do That? With Animatronics!

 

If you’ve recently been to the movie theater to see an awesome film you may have asked yourself, “how do they do that?” There are many things going on in films that make you question what is real. However, in the world of animatronics and robots, defying human understanding is becoming fairly commonplace.

For example, in one of our recent blog posts we featured an animatronic arm and hand combination that doubles as a movie prop. It will be used in an upcoming film for a scene in which a man has his hand chopped off in one continuous motion. Animatronics makes it possible to film the scene with full realism and no need to cut away (no pun intended, ha!).

The world of animatronics has completely revolutionized the film industry. But it has also done wonders for other industries as well. Not just industrial robots, but service robotics (including a sub-field of animatronics) are becoming a huge part of world-wide living.

Technology Increases Realism

In 1961 when Uncle Walt’s coined the term Audio-Animatronics (AA), there was no mistaking his imagineered devices for real humanoid and animals. That was exactly the pure charm of that new technology. The audience of that time was easy to “fool”, much more accepting of the entertainment and not so focused on the details of the technology. But that’s all changed. Technology has advanced to the point where it is possible to replicate even faint muscle movements in the face. Smiles are becoming more realistic, eyebrow twitches are nearly indiscernible, and blinking eyes look just like the real thing. If you don’t believe me just look at any of the major film critic’s review of this year’s “Hansel and Gretel Witch Hunters”. Almost all of them mention “Edward” the troll as being amazing BECAUSE none of them could believe he was actually REAL, not CG. Huge cheers to Mike Elizalde and Mark Setrakian to making such an amazingly real / stylized animatronic that you foold the most savvy.

Animatronic masters have not yet made a foolproof un-stylized (i.e. completely real, such as a lifecast) human face but they are getting closer. So much so that we are now able to build a life-like animatronic figure that looks and acts just as you do. All we need are some specs and some photographs and we can create your animatronic alternative. How’s that for realism?

Who Uses Animatronics

While all of this is well and good, you might be wondering who uses animatronics. After all, they are not a commodity you can buy off-the-shelf, but an investment. If the truth be known, there are lots of individuals and businesses embracing custom robots.

For example, corporations sometimes purchase animatronic robots to replicate important company leaders like Hiroshi Ishiguro. Some even use them at tradeshows as promotional tools like the “Actroid” co-developed by Japan’s Kokoro Corp.

At the municipal level, custom robotics are often used for public memorials, in museums and historical societies, and even as props for city celebrations, festivals, and parades. And while it’s true they can be expensive initially, a well-built robot from an animatronic company like ours will pay for itself over even only months of use.

Animatronics have changed the way we look at lots of different industries. What we’ve been seeing in films over the last few years is now a reality for your company, nonprofit organization, municipality, or even your own home. We invite you to contact us today so we can show you how animatronics can work for you.

Animatronic Top Secret Agent

 

James Bond.

Stirling Mallory Archer (codename: Duchess).

We love secret agents.

The romance of exotic locations, the excitement of the chase, the awesome gadgets.

So we have created a Top Secret Agent animatronic!

Your own Top Agent to break the ice with gorgeous Bond-girls! He also can stand guard at your party, club, office, he will work anywhere there may be a chance for adventure!

 

This Top Agent randomly raises his drinking arm (or whatever you want that hand to hold, both hands are pose-able) and randomly looks left and right to check for danger.

Power? No problem! 110 VAC US / Japan household power or EU standard 220 VAC is fine as well.

 

Hang on…what about your Bugatti? Is it protected while you fill it up at the petrol station? At night? You can actually take Top Agent’s torso off his legs and put him in your car. He plugs into your lighter-socket.

 

At home, in your car, your Top Agent is always on guard and ready to entertain, protect, and seduce women! Just plug him in.

Contact us if you would like to know more

 

Animatronic Heads for Everybody!

 

We are finding that more and more students, kids, parents, people from nearly all age groups want to be involved in some kind of animatronic. Some want to play with animatronic robotic eyes, some want an arm, some a hand, and some want a whole robot.

But there is one barrier common to all:

Not many can afford animatronics.

The transition from a “toy” like the cool animatronic monkey head from years back to a full-on advanced PIDD controlled electric, hydraulic, or pneumatic animatronic robot is a HUGE leap. But some have such a passion for having an animatronic that they have bought that monkey, for example, hacked into it, and started re-wiring, re-programming, re-building the whole thing! That is a LOT of work!

We recognize the need, and know that right now EVERYBODY is on a budget. So why not make an in-between? An animatronic platform that you can immediately play with out of the box BUT also encourages you to get  in the guts of it, make new facial motions with more servos, plug in ANY controller you want and program it with simple codes or even stretch it to use complex computer vision algorithms.

 

Here it is: Mecha Hitsu Gen2

An Open-Source Animatronic Platform

 

Many skins are available for one animatronic skull

 

5 years in development and leveraging technologies and manufacturing processes we have recently discovered we have a way of giving you what you want at a decent price.

PLUS you can change the skins! No kidding. One skull, many faces.

Those of you out there making animatronics at a professional level know that we typically go the other way: start with the sculpt, then to the underskull, then mechanize. This is different, but the Mecha Hitsu Gen2 can be put to work immediately in your theme park, Halloween display, research labs, etc. No huge overhead costs, no long lead-time waiting for the custom sculpt, molding, scanning, modeling, cnc’ing, assembly and programming of a Custom Android.

We will be posting videos of the Mecha Hitsu Gen2 from clients that have made exceptional animatronic displays, research, demonstrations and more using their Mecha Hitsu Gen2 platform.

This is only the beginning…