Catie Cuan

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A robot mirrors Cuan's arm movements/
Catie Cuan
Nationality United States
Occupation ballet dancer, engineer
Known for using dance to develop robtos that move in a more human way

Catie Cuan is an American engineer.[1][2][3][4] Cuan was profiled on the PBS Newshour, on December 7, 2018, which described her a PhD student in mechanical engineering, at Stanford University, who had worked as a professional ballet dancer.[5] The profile showed Cuan bringing her former career to use as she and her colleagues worked to make robots more human, using her as a model, and tracking her dance moves, to train robots to move in ways that seemed more human, and thus less threatening.

Forbes magazine interviewed Cuan and a collaborator, Amy LaViers, a professor at the University of Illinois's Robotics, Automation, and Dance Lab.[1] The pair developed a performance called "Time to compile".[2][6]

Cuan and Adrianne Wortzel began artist's residencies at a robotics company called Thoughtworks, in June 2018.[7] Cuan said one of her projects there would be to work on a movement based Turing test.


| url = | title = CURTAIN and Time to Compile: A Demonstration of an Experimental Testbed for Human-Robot Interaction | author = C Cuan, I Pakrasi, E Berl, A LaViers - 2018 27th IEEE International Symposium on Robot and …, 2018 | work = [[IEEE] | date = 2018 | page = | location = | isbn = | language = | trans_title = | archiveurl = | archivedate = | accessdate = 2018-12-08 | deadurl = No | quote = }}

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  1. 1.0 1.1 Christina Wallace (2018-03-18). "PODCAST: The Limit Does Not Exist In ChoreoTech". Forbes magazine. Retrieved 2018-12-07. "Cuan is a performer, choreographer, and technologist who is interested in the physical manifestations of digital identities and LaViers is an assistant professor in the Mechanical Science and Engineering Department at the University where she develops robotic algorithms inspired by movement and dance theory." 
  2. 2.0 2.1 Andrea Morris (2018-04-04). "Meet Amy LaViers: The Choreographer Engineer Teaching Robots To Dance For DARPA". Forbes magazine. Retrieved 2018-12-07. "LaViers is working on a performance piece with choreographer Catie Cuan called Time To Compile, debuting fall 2018 at Dance NOW at Joe’s Pub in New York City. Time To Compile explores human interaction with digital technology. “We're looking at what you might call embodied digital technology,” says LaViers. “Moving machines that are sharing space with humans.” One theme the piece explores is whether robots are becoming more like humans or humans more like robots. Machines engineered to maximize efficiency may have introduced a human version of The Variability Problem. We spend hours hunched over desks clicking and tapping, exacerbating injuries acquired from limited, repetitive movements." 
  3. Alexandra Simon (2018-09-04). "Do ‘the robot’: Collaboration dance fest features robotic team-up". Brooklyn Daily. Retrieved 2018-12-07. "Among the artists Mannino chose for the fest is Catie Cuan, who will perform a 30-minute dance piece on Sept. 14, created alongside an industrial manufacturing robot housed at Pratt Institute. The Crown Heights choreographer is really stepping beyond the boundaries of dance, said Mannino." 
  4. Catie Cuan, Ishaan Pakrasi, Amy LaViers. "Time to Compile: An Interactive Art Installation". 16th Biennial Symposium on Arts & Technology Proceedings. Retrieved 2018-12-07. 
  5. Jeffery Brown (2018-12-07). "How these humanities graduates are finding jobs in Silicon Valley". PBS Newshour. Retrieved 2018-12-07. "A former professional ballet dancer, Cuan now dances with robots, doing research as a Ph.D. student in mechanical engineering at Stanford University." 
  6. Chris Ip (2018-10-12). "Catie Cuan’s robot choreography". engadget. Retrieved 2018-12-07. "In a former shipyard in New York City, the contemporary dancer and choreographer Catie Cuan twists and sways her limbs. Her dance partner is 9 feet tall and weighs nearly two-tons: an ABB IRB 6700 robot typically used for the "three Ds" of industrial labor -- tasks that are dull, dirty and dangerous." 
  7. "Robotics Artists Begin Their Residencies at ThoughtWorks". Thoughtworks. 2018-06-13. Retrieved 2018-12-07. "The robotics artists Adrianne Wortzel and Catie Cuan have begun their dual residencies at ThoughtWorks."