There’s really no two ways about it. The appeal to create robotic doppelgangers of already scary animals seems to be too strong for some people to resist. The seemingly innocuous drone hummingbird that I blogged about a few weeks ago is harmless enough (although the surveillance implications are concerning) but when a few faithful readers sent me the videos below, I had to share them.
The first video (above) features a robotic snake “meeting” a robotic spider. Now I’m not personally afraid of snakes but I can’t help but feel like spiders are some alien life form arrived on a comet 165 million years ago. Apparently I’m not alone in feeling this way as arachnophobia is among the most common phobias, as is ophidiophobia (the fear of snakes). The robotic genius behind these monstrosities really outdid themselves, particularly if your a fan of the scene in Terminator Salvation when Christain Bale is attacked by the snake-like hydrobots, but I digress.
The second video (above) is an ad for robotic insect larva (HEXBUG) that despite the creativity and sophistication seem to lack something in the cosmetic appeal department. Most people don’t like real bugs – let alone their larva – and they’re pretty abundant already so is there a burgeoning market for artificial ones a la Tom Selleck’s 1984 cyber thriller Runaway. If you’re not ready to break into being a robot larva owner, I have good news for you – HEXBUG also makes a spider (below).
At this point there’s almost no denying that between the military’s interest in possessing a sophisticated drone army, the commercial opportunities for robots in the home (i.e., Roomba), the scientific possibilities (i.e., autonomous exploration of remote planets), and the passionate cottage industry that’s springing up around home robotics – we’ll be seeing a lot more innovation in the area of robotics.
- The Japanese flying sphere (marshallstanton.com)
- The Navy’s UFO drone (marshallstanton.com)
- The age of robotic warfare (marshallstanton.com)
- WASP drone: the next chapter in cyber-terrorism (marshallstanton.com)
- Darpa to make cybernetics a reality (marshallstanton.com)
- Monkey controls robot arm with its brain (marshallstanton.com)