Robin Jonsson: The most human. 04.11.2018, MDT, Stockholm

Welcome to the world! A brand-new baby robot is born, complete with two blinking camera lenses as eyes and jolty hip, knee and ankle joints with which it can shuffle forward in a funny-looking, mechanical walk, three fingers that it can use to adopt ‘dance fever’, disco-like poses, a set of built-in speakers emanating the sweet, high-pitched voice of a child that coughs, laughs and eventually speaks to us as if we have always been its friends. It’s very first moments were revealed in an unboxing video set to Lou Reed’s ‘Perfect Day’ – we watched from the robot’s perspective as a team of people in blue tracksuits greeted us, smiling and cooing, sweeping us into the cutesy cheesiness of a perfect scene, which undoubtedly left everyone with a warm and fuzzy feeling inside. And as the baby robot’s real-life dance partner, Ludvig Daae, who first imitated the newborn with isolated creases of the knees and swings of his arms, increased the intricacy of his movements, we began to fully appreciate the smooth mechanics of the human body: while he twisted and turned his torso and folded his limbs with great flexibility and grace, the little humanoid could only watch from the sidelines. So much for the increasing paranoia towards AI ‘taking over’ and outmanoeuvring humankind – perhaps, like Jonsson here suggests, we can instead look forward to inviting our future inventions for a boogie.

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