Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Automatic Expressions

Press a button to smile
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Your wife left you and your ferret died that morning. Nothing could make you smile.

Tiny flesh colored electrodes attached to the face in key locations faciliate electrical manipulation of the muscle so various facial expressions can be selected on a remote held in the persons pocket.

A dial set to "Smile" and a quick press of the button and you light up the room with your brilliant smile, although you're actually incapable of smiling on your own at that time.

Leaving the dial between two expressions not advised.

Giblet, Feb 22 2005

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       "Last night
Some poor devil stole my old truck
While they were firing me
From Goose Poking
My ferret's dead
and my wife's moved on another mile
But thanks to AE
I've still got a smile"
  

       Ok, I don't know how to drawl and whine on my keyboard, and the pacing is rough, but I'll work on it while I drink whiskey and ride my horse.[Something I have significant experience at]
normzone, Feb 22 2005
  

       My warranty I wait to claim;
To fix the switch will take some time
Thus to you I should explain:
This rictus is not genuine.
Detly, Feb 22 2005
  

       Reminds me a bit of a scene with Morgan Fairchild in "Holy Man."
bristolz, Feb 22 2005
  

       This sounds like the e-stim that physical therapists use. It causes the muscle to tense involuntarily. The power is adjustable. At the power level where the muscle first starts to actually move, the tingling is still quite tolerable.   

       It's like being a puppet, pulling your own strings.   

       This would be great in a movie with Jim Carrey. Someone grabs his remote and turns his face every which way. Then in the final confrontation, the bad guy is defeated by the face-manipulation machine.   

       They say that the act of putting on a smiling face can actually make you feel happier, through some feedback mechanism. So this machine could get the ball rolling. Most times, people can fake it 'till they make it, but if your ferret just died...   

       Would the dial be marked with the different flavors of emotion? The smile dial could have sinister, angelic, haughty, obsequious, comforting, cajoling, victorious, sexy, etc.
robinism, Feb 22 2005
  

       Watch "Holy Man" by Eddie Murphy. I'd have to hook a 12v battery up to this thing.
david_scothern, Feb 22 2005
  

       I was pondering something similar to this. [Giblet]'s use is all in fun, sort of like ether as a party drug. I think this principle might help paralyzed folks or those with muscular dystrophy.   

       I have linked a paper describing how a certain type of pacemaker produced pectoral muscle contractions in some people. Consider a situation where the pacemaker was implanted in the muscle. One could have a series of leads in various muscle. Sequentially activating these could cause the body to performed certain stereotyped tasks. [robinism] nailed it: like a pupper pulling ones own strings. One would drive ones own body around.   

       At the very least, a pacemaker-type device implanted in the bladder and triggered externally (by a magnet on the skin?) could be used to cause the bladder to contract and expel its contents. This would really help folks who have neurogenic bladders - they rely on catheters and such, which always get infected.
bungston, Jan 18 2008
  
      
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