Feeds

My God! Someone's actually made a cyborg!

It turns toward light and not much else

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

After years of sci-fi nuts and phoney professors claiming they have built a cyborg - part machine, part living tissue - it would appear that someone has actually done it.

It can't do very much and it's incredible inefficient but it actually does use biological material to communicate with machinery to some practical end. What is it? The brain stem of a bloodsucking fish called a lamprey stuck in an oxygenated salt solution and connected to a robot.

What does it do? Detect light and then turn to face it. If a light shines on it, the brain sends out an electronic pulse. This is sent through a microprocessor which causes the robots wheels to move and face the light source.

That's it really. Not really very useful and it's not a cyborg in any sense of the word. And it dies after a few days. But we are bigging it up simply because it works and actually is what its creators say it is. Honesty basically.

Of course, the scientists at the University of Chicago got a little carried away when quizzed about what the future may hold and rabbitted on about it being used for stroke victims or people with Parkinson's - but we'll let that go.

Don't start thinking that media-hungry "scientists" will now start being honest though. At almost exactly the same time, a Russian scientist had reverted to the tradition of talking utter twaddle. Vitali Valtsev reckons he has built the world's first artificial brain that can compete with human brains. Amazing.

Except, after 30 years working on the thing, he can't actually provide any evidence of the "brain" working. Or even that the brain exists. But Vitali won't let these small facts stop him. No, instead he's already predicting the end of mankind as his brain learns from mistakes and takes over. "This machine needs to be trained like a new-born child. It is extremely important for us to make it a friend and not a criminal or an enemy," he waffled.

Reminds us of the UK's very own Captain Cyborg, Kevin Warwick. Planet GaGa must be getting very crowded. ®

Related Story

Captain Cyborg: I'm embarrassed to speak

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
Facebook pays INFINITELY MORE UK corp tax than in 2012
Thanks for the £3k, Zuck. Doh! you're IN CREDIT. Guess not
DOUBLE BONK: Testy fanbois catch Apple Pay picking pockets
Users wail as tapcash transactions are duplicated
Happiness economics is bollocks. Oh, UK.gov just adopted it? Er ...
Opportunity doesn't knock; it costs us instead
Google Glassholes are UNDATEABLE – HP exec
You need an emotional connection, says touchy-feely MD... We can do that
YARR! Pirates walk the plank: DMCA magnets sink in Google results
Spaffing copyrighted stuff over the web? No search ranking for you
In the next four weeks, 100 people will decide the future of the web
While America tucks into Thanksgiving turkey, the world will be taking over the net
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.