1934 – MACAZ Robot – Ángel Surís Busto (Cuba)
Macaz – Cuba's first robot that, it's claimed, could "walk" (roll), turn, talk, smoke, shake hands, and can get slowly upright. Made of aluminum, iron, brass, lead, copper and weighing 350 lbs. It's possibly the first mobile "robot" made since the coinage of the word, although there were other mobile mechanical men that appeared before 1934.
English translation of an article posted by Francisco Pascasio Blanco Ávila.
WHO WAS Macaz?
Today I'll tell you something that looks like science fiction, but it's totally true: Macaz history.
I was born in Havana in 1930. When I first met four years old – still oblivious to the adventures of "Brick Bradford" and "Flash Gordon", in which practically learned to read – a Cuban built the first robot to walk the world. Not me. This was published in the journal Bohemia then, a copy of which I show below:
As will be understood, nor age, nor the activities allowed me to appraise the significance of the event. The Scoop got to mid-90s, when Evaristo Arrinda Dam, (x) the then President of the Federation of Asturianas of Cuba, I was about to say:
– Hey Whitey, you who are d ibujante and curiosities you like so much, I have a surprise: The story of a colleague of yours named Angel Surís Busto, who died in Havana on April 24, 1988 at 90 years of age .
Well, – I replied- shoots.
– It was a good DESIGNER or with a vivid imagination, capable of the wildest projects. I'll tell you because I knew him personally because of family ties that bound us.
With it, me an envelope where they came from some pages yellowed and weather effects. They were photocopies where, besides the page of "Bohemia" earlier, had portraits of the author, and cartoons among which one of José Martí made c on simple elements of design.
To not go into the background of the case, and the difficulty of not being able to read the copy of that article by the natural reduction for the Web, digitize step quote:
"Year 1934. The local residents of Key West run habanero rowdy … A ROBOT! WHAT IS A ROBOT THING? … An iron doll that walks and talks. Do you speak? … So it's not a doll … And smoke? … That's already too much.
The inventor's house was packed Rafael Surí within friends, outside, and perched up in balcone s, hundreds of onlookers.
The father of the child:
– Are you an engineer?
– Mecca unique?
– Expert in radio issues?
So, what are you?
– Yes, hard day nte, pencils, pens, drawing paper … At night sprockets, gears, levers, metal plates, electric batteries.
Suri smiles, have spent 46 years and today, in the quiet of his home, surrounded by his paintings, (a great artist) said:
The robot Macaz: An event.
Human? … Walk, turn, talk, smoke, and shake hands … gets slowly upright.
Composition, aluminum, iron, brass, lead, copper.
Your weight: 350 lbs. Tailoring Period: 7 years.
Suri tells us – were long nights, tests and more tests, failure, success means, the ultimate success.
Macaz became today. Was presented in theaters and parks. He traveled the country. Children and old vied mechanical shake his hand. Press "serious", and the center did humorous comments, the popular satire redemptive naming him problems that republic:
"With half dozen Macaz brains like in Cuba just malaria." Say Julito Diaz Alhambra theater actor … "
He had a mechanical heart.
– Will you hear my heart? … tac, tac, tac, tic, tic, tic …
But the mechanical heart stopped working, entrepreneurs have long been forgotten, and Macaz, the first robot to walk the world slept their dream of metal among other inventions, next to oil paintings, drawings, and constant smile of his creator, already has 82 years and still works with his imagination and hands eternally youthful, to manufacture joys.
That ends the interview the journalist Armando Lopez.
I can only add that the word robot comes from another talented creator Czech: Karel Capek (1890-1938), who fearful of technological development at the time, led him to write works as "Apocrypha" or "War of the Salamanders" in automation which satirized the dehumanizing and created the buzzword ROBOT that spread like wildfire throughout the literature, film, and comics later.
As you can see, we also had our Macaz: Underdeveloped, yes. But Creole as the palms.
(X) Here I caught the inseparable companion VW Evaristo in silver, in the mid 90s of last century. I should clarify that the fur "Arrinda" family property, was one of the most prestigious street shops Neptune – commercial nerve center of the capital – in an era that became famous "La Esquina del Pecado". That is, Galiano and Neptune.
See the complete list of early Mechanical Men and Robots here.