Robotic Geese

About This Project

Robotic Geese are remote controlled goose robots that enable participants or robotic goose drivers (aka goosers) to interact with actual geese in urban contexts. The robotic goose interface allows people to approach the birds, follow them closely and interact in a variety of ways that would not otherwise be possible without this interface. The goose drivers can ‘talk to’ the geese, issuing utterances through the robotic interface, delivering prerecorded goose ‘words,’ their own vocal impersonations, or other sounds (such as goose flute hunting calls). Each utterance via the robotic goose triggers the camera in the robot’s head to capture 2-4 seconds of video recording the responses of the actual biological geese. These video samples upload to the public web-based goosespeak database that the participants can annotate, i.e. “the goose was telling me to go away,” “he was saying Hi.” As this database of goose responses accretes, redundancy and correlations in the annotations may provide robust semantic descriptors of the library of video clips.


What the goose can do?
+ GOOSE = AUDIBLE: The sounds that the geese make will be channeled into the gallery to the goose cockpit from the mikes embedded in Leda; where they will be matched against similar sounds. If a translation exists the goose call will be translated into human.

+ GOOSE = VISIBLE: They can see you goosing inside the gallery they can trigger the camera in leda head pushing images to you. geese trigger the camera on by uttering something in close proximity to the Leda, or by pecking at Leda (mike triggered).

+ GOOSE = ACTIONS: They can follow chase, attack, push or avoid Leda, communicating how much they like or don’t like the human behavior Leda is channeling. They can use other (subtle) social and visible cues to communicate with Leda (ie. you); turn their back to you; or wing fluffing to warn you or scare you; even play with you.


What people can do

You can follow the geese: you can direct Leda for ward or turn left or right. (no backwards)
You can chase or be chased by a goose; you can drive around in circles and see what the geese think of that.
You can chase, attack or talk to a person who is in the geese’s environment (i.e. providing some security services for the geese).


You can talk to the geese or a goose from the cockpit inside the gallery. you can record a conversation with the geese to the public database; (you can annotate the file with an interpretation of what you think happened in the database remotely).
You can try your own goose impersonation sounds directly using Leda ventriloquism; and you can save these to a database if you get any interesting response. Leda will open its mouth when you speak issuing; controlled by your goose mouth action shadow.


You can turn on Leda’ video camera and get a close up view of the interaction; you can save that piece of video to a database with an annotation of why it was interesting, what you thought the interaction was about.


Goosing_ 7714: a folorn leda [robotic goose 5.6] piloted by humans ashore experiences social rejection from her biological counterparts from OOZ Goose translation database, February 15, 2004. Robotic goose, goose control system, uncaged feral geese in urban setting, and database of annotated audio and video clips, using php scripting, MySQL database on Apache webserver, dimensions variable. Collection De Verbeelding art landscape nature, the Netherlands


Hear an excerpt from the Whitney Biennialand see images of a Goose Launch here.