Tezuka 2020: Bringing Osamu Tezuka’s Work to Life with AI

AI Manga

Every day I find myself being truly inspired by the unique ways that flash technology is being used to solve challenges and support innovation in future technologies – technologies that were unimaginable just a few years ago. This innovation happens each day in our walls, and the collaboration, commitment and drive to achieve excellence by my colleagues can be truly inspiring. One example that I’m sharing today is a recent project that KIOXIA had the distinct honor to be a part of – Tezuka 2020. This project not only showcases the unique expertise of our engineers, but also reinforces our commitment to the technology and innovation that drives #FutureMemories.

KIOXIA is known for pushing the boundaries of technology, and this project exemplified this ethos of ‘going beyond’. The team challenged itself to do what has never been done before, collaborating with Artificial Intelligence (AI) artists and academic partners to create the world’s first [1] AI-designed manga. Technical expertise from KIOXIA’s own AI engineers was invaluable in developing these first AI-designed manga drawings and stories based on Osamu Tezuka’s great body of work.

Although you may not be familiar with Tezuka, he is considered by many as the “Father of Manga,” the Japanese art of comic story telling.  He embraced the joy of depicting dreams through technology and strongly believed that science should never leave humans behind.  In his spirit, the team combined the AI-developed characters and stories of Tezuka’s work with human design elements to complete the very first AI-developed manga of its kind, Phaedo.  Phaedo is the story of a down-and-out philosopher and his robot bird, Apollo, and together they attempt to solve crimes in Tokyo in 2030.

In order to develop new stories through Tezuka’s eyes, the team of researchers and artists utilized AI to review hundreds of thousands of stories and images including world famous titles like “Astro Boy” and “Black Jack” to better understand Tezuka’s style and approach to storytelling.  The team was comprised of KIOXIA deep learning specialists and engineers who optimize semiconductor fabrication productivity and performance using AI technology, illustrators and writers from Tezuka Productions Co. and AI researchers from Keio University and Future University Hakodate.   

This unique human-AI collaboration of artistic and technical expertise is another great example of how KIOXIA drives technology in exciting new ways to create things we never imagined possible - and build a better future for everyone. It’s a truly unique project that KIOXIA is proud to be a part of, and we hope you enjoy the outcome of this exciting project.

To learn more about Tezuka 2020 visit #FutureMemories and our news release announcing the English version of the world’s first AI-designed manga.


[1] As of June 3, 2020. KIOXIA Corporation survey.

The views and opinions expressed in this blog are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect those of KIOXIA America, Inc.

Comments are closed