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Ranchi based techie develops ‘Rashmi’, India’s first Hindi speaking humanoid robot

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Indian counterpart of Sophia, which is considered as a robotic marvel developed by Hong Kong-based Company Hanson Robotics, has been developed by a Ranchi based software developer named Ranjit Srivastava, 38. The creator has more than 15-years of expertise in the field. Indian Sophia is named Rashmi which is designed to speak Hindi, Bhojpuri and Marathi along with English.

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Ranjit claims ‘Rashmi’ is the first Hindi speaking realistic humanoid robot and India’s first lip-syncing robot. The humanoid machine uses linguistic interpretation (LI), artificial intelligence (AI), visual data and facial recognition systems.

Ranjit has developed the speaking robot in two years at a minimum cost of Rs 50,000.

Srivastava said, “Rashmi functions under a specially designed software and linguistic interpretation system developed by me. The LI programme analyses the feeling of the conversation while AI program analyses the conversation to extract response from the device.”

Dr Somnath Chattopadhyaya, associate professor of IIT-Indian School of Mines, Dhanbad said that he has not heard of any Hindi speaking robot in India. Though I have not seen the robot, it is incredible if it was developed.

Dr Somnath Chattopadhyaya is also the dean of innovation and incubation at IIT-Indian School of Mines, Dhanbad.

“It will take one month more to give it the complete shape of a human. Head and body have been developed and they are functioning properly. The process is on to add hands and legs to it,” Srivastava said.

Srivastava also added that the robot has many features besides lip-syncing. It gives facial, eyes, lips and eyebrow expressions and it can move its neck.

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 “Humanoid robot is the need of future generation. It can work as a bank receptionist, helper, a friend of lonely people, among others,” he claimed.

Ask the robot anything, it will reply in the same manner. If the robot is told you are ugly, it replies, go to hell. Say you are beautiful, it will reply thank you.

When asked about her favourite actor, it replied Shahrukh Khan. “It can talk for hours with a person and it recognises the person after few meetings due to cameras fitted in its eyes,” Srivastava said.

When asked, who inspired Srivastava to develop Rashmi, he said, “It was Sophia. When I saw it and its functions, I thought it could be developed and decided to develop a Hindi speaking robot in July 2016.”

Srivastava has developed quite a few software programmes for different departments of the state government. Many of his software received national recognition.

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