Tag: ‘Kao’

Robot beauty goes skin-deep

19 Sep 2006

Honey Doll --

In a move that could provide a crucial boost to our robotic friends struggling up the near side of the Uncanny Valley, major cosmetics manufacturer Kao Corporation and a Keio University research team led by robotics professor Takashi Maeno have developed an artificial skin that feels just like human skin.

Skin, the largest organ of the human body, consists of a soft layer of tissue (dermis) covered by a tougher protective layer (epidermis). The artificial skin developed by Kao and Keio mimics the feel of human skin with a 1-cm thick "dermis" of elastic silicone covered by a 0.2-mm thick "epidermis" of firm urethane. Countless tiny hexagonal indentations etched into the urethane epidermis provide it with a very realistic texture.

In a series of unscientific tests, 10 out of 12 people who touched the skin thought it felt like human skin, while equipment designed to measure the mechanical properties of skin confirmed the artificial skin had characteristics resembling human skin.

The skin was unveiled earlier this month at the 24th Annual Conference of the Robotics Society of Japan (RSJ) at Okayama University. While Kao plans to use the artificial skin in the development of new cosmetics, Professor Maeno sees potential applications in the field of household robotics, where there are many opportunities for human-robot interaction.

[Source: Yomiuri Shimbun]

Camera system for the ultimate narcissist?

02 Mar 2006

Cosmetics giant Kao has developed a "multi-perspective image analysis system" that captures facial images from a variety of angles and under various lighting conditions, for the purpose of analyzing skin characteristics such as tone and sheen. The system's ability to perform detailed analysis of make-up finish means it will likely play a role in cosmetic product development.

Kao's multi-perspective image analysis system

At 3 meters (10 feet) in diameter, the semi-spherical apparatus consists of 20 cameras and 50 lights, enabling users to observe subtle changes in how the skin looks under a wide range of indoor and outdoor lighting conditions.

Some captured images

In addition to the frontal view that you see in the mirror, the system records lateral and diagonal images, allowing you to check how the face appears to others. Make-up finish and the beauty of bare skin can be quantitatively analyzed.

Kao says the system was used in the development of its new foundation, Sofina Raycious Perfect Angle Powder, which went on sale at the end of February.

[Source: IT Media]