Jessica Ellis
December 06, 2015 1:43 pm

The future is here, and it’s bringing one of the greatest inventors in history to life. At the International Robot Exhibition 2015 in Tokyo, an incredibly lifelike android of Italian mastermind Leonardo da Vinci grabbed the spotlight.

The bot, developed by University of Osaka expert Minoru Asada, was designed to help give people a tactile connection to the historic genius. PR spokesman for the Da Vinci Network Yakata Masakazu told The Huffington Post, “This Leonardo da Vinci, however, is the first android, which imitates a famous historical figure known by everyone all over the world.” In addition to realistic features and lifelike movements, the android can speak in Japanese, allowing it to interact with guests.

Leonardo Da Vinci would doubtless approve of his robotic double. The poster boy of the Italian Renaissance, da Vinci’s talents were seemingly endless. In addition to being a noted artist, he was also a pioneer in engineering, flight technology, mathematics, weaponry, paleontology, and architecture. Some credit him with initial development of inventions such as the helicopter and the tank, envisioned centuries before actually being brought to life.

In fact, this whole  robotics exhibition would be right up the polymath’s alley. Showcasing the frontier of robotic engineering, the International Robotic Exhibition is a virtual cave of wonders erected every two years. In addition to uncanny recreations of historic icons like da Vinci, the exhibition also features robots designed to advance humanity in a variety of ways. Another big hit at this years’ conference were a series of robots who can navigate difficult terrain, designed with the intention of creating disaster-response robots for emergency situations like earthquakes.

On a sillier front, the conference also featured a popular dancing desktop robot called PreMaidAI, meant to replicate the movements and mannerisms of Japanese pop singers. Da Vinci may not have entirely approved of that one, but we kind of want it for Christmas.

Check out the video of the impressive Renaissance robot below:

(Images via Twitter)

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