Thursday, February 7, 2013


I was at Japan Society this evening to see two short plays by Oriza Hirata, a production of Seinendan Theater Company and Osaka University Robot Theater Project. In the second play, I, Worker (Hataraku watashi), there were two robots interacting with two actors.  In the first play there were two female characters, one is dying and the other reads poems to console her; throughout the play I was in no doubt that one of them was an actress simulating a robot; but the woman on our left in this scene was a geminoid-f, which moves the mouth, smiles, frowns, tilts her head, and gesticulates.  I was totally deceived.

Saturday, February 2, 2013


A friend in a distant land wrote me out of the blue: “Darling, what is creativity? Why is creativity important?”  I wrote back: “You are asking for answer which requires at the minimum a 900-page book-length manuscript, and that will take 9 years or more to compose.” But, urged by the prompt reply requested, I gave her a short answer and wrote the following. 

Creativity is finding a new connection between two heretofore unrelating things, like a poet who juxtaposes two words to produce a new layered meaning, making 2+2 = 5, and it requires imagination that one exercises when doodling whether in art, literature, science, technology, or any human endeavor, active or contemplative. It is important because without it humanity will stagnate.  All children are naturally creative; as they grow up, many lose their inborn capacity to doodle, that is, to wonder, query and dream.