In the U.S. we have Lady Gaga and her army of "little monster" fans, but in Japan the entertainers bring their own armies, in this case AKB48, a 61-member-strong troupe of young Japanese female idols who were essentially interchangeable--until now. Recently the group unwittingly participated in a promotion that could amount to their own pop music demise by helping to create a virtual pop idol that sings.
Composed of a mix the facial features of several of the group's members, the virtual idol is named Aimi Eguchi and is completely convincing as the new 16-year-old member she is designed to represent. The group also added their vocals and motion capture data to the virtual idol, thus giving Aimi the final piece she needs to essentially take over the group! Fans can mix and match the various AKB48 members to create their own unique (albeit, less functional) idol here. Now all you need a group of anonymous girls and some software and you too can create the world's next pop idol. You can see the making of Aimi and her message to fans (a plug for Glico snacks) in the video below.