1935 – Lifelike Robot – Milton Tenenbaum (American)

Source: Popular Science, October 1935

LIFELIKE ROBOT SPEAKS, SMOKES. AND DRINKS
The robot and a companion go fishing. So realistic in appearance is this mechanical man that it is hard to pick out at a casual glance.  After closer inspection, you may distinguish him as the figure sitting on the right.

HOW THE DUMMY PLAYS ITS PART
The operator talks into a microphone which actuates the loadspeaker mechanism (exposed) in the dummy and gives him his 'voice'. The movements of the robot are made possible by the intricate works shown at the left.

SINGING, smoking, drinking, and holding an animated conversation are some of the accomplishments of an amazing mechanical man designed by Milton Tenenbaum, of Brooklyn. N. Y. Controlled remotely from a concealed point of vantage, the robot is operated by built-in electric motors. A rubber bulb, alternately squeezed and released by a motor-driven cam, enables the automaton to puff a lighted pipe realistically. Compressed air stiffens or relaxes its legs. Words addressed to the robot, picked up by its hidden microphone, are carried to the distant operator, who replies through a loudspeaker in the dummy figure. Meanwhile the lips of the figure move in a lifelike fashion. The creator of the mechanical man, a young sculptor, proposes the use of figures of this type in animated movie cartoons.


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One Response to “1935 – Lifelike Robot – Milton Tenenbaum (American)”

  1. Antoni Gual Says:

    A robot that smokes makes me think about Vaucansons’ duck. It eated, digested and s….! in the seventeenth or eighteenth century. It was called an automaton back then!