As a wristwatch, this giant may not be the best thing, but it certainly is pretty cool. When you want to know the time, the watch mechanism kicks in and writes time on the watch face. To make sure it doesn’t overwrite on the watch face, the automata starts with dusting off and erasing the watch face. Of course, the whole mechanism is quite bulky and requires steadiness, but as an automata, it is pretty damn cool.
The Writer as the drawing boy automata is called, was built in the 1770s by Swiss-born watchmaker Pierre Jaquet-Droz with help from his son Henri-Louis, and Jean-Frédéric Leschot. Mincing no words, it is one magnificent and spectacular piece, and probably a computer way ahead of its time. The Writer looks like a small boy seated on a desk with a quill in his hands. Inside the body, are 6000 custom made parts that are designed to get the custom-made writing machine to work.
Karakuri ningyo are automata / mechanized puppets that have been in Japan since the 17th century. Pulleys and weights are used to make the automata perform numerous tasks. From the video’s description, “Its roots can be traced back 200-300 years during the Edo period when skilled craftsmen created automata (self-operating machines). Using nothing more than pulleys and weights they were able to make the Karakuri (Japanese automata) perform amazing tasks.”
The automaton monkey is hooked to cigarettes. Somebody get the monkey some weed.