Original URL: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2004/12/16/rat_brained_android/

The rise of the rat-brain controlled android

Be afraid

By Lester Haines

Posted in Science, 16th December 2004 13:14 GMT

There are two further indications today that the inexorable Rise of the Machines™ will certainly lead to the eventual subjugation of humanity.

According to a BBC report, Honda's roving roboambassador Asimo has now acquired the ability to run - another step towards it finding "gainful employment in homes and offices", or, as we suspect, chasing screaming carbon-based lifeforms with a plasma rifle in its cold, cybernetic grasp.

Giving Asimo the ability to acheive a modest 3kmph was apparently no easy task. The boffins behind the project define running as "having both feet off the ground between strides" - something which involved ensuring that Asimo's feet could absorb the impact of landing without ending up in an ungainly sprawl on the floor.

And the point of all this? According to a Honda spokesman: "The aim is to develop a robot that can help people in their daily lives." In which case, we can heartily recommend that Honda speaks to the University of Florida, where scientists have reportedly grown a "brain-in-a-dish" capable of piloting an F-22 from just "25,000 neural cells extracted from a single rat embryo".

The scientific community has hailed this breakthrough by Thomas DeMarse, which is ostensibly intended for research into the development of drugs to cure nasties such as epilepsy.

Of course, that won't pay the bills, so the first task for the team was to find an application the military can use - in this case a rat-brain sky jockey capable of undertaking missions too hazardous for mere mortals.

For those readers curious as to how the University of Florida is precipitating the destruction of mankind, here's how you too can make your own cyborg-controlling rodent intelligence:

  1. Take 25,000 rat embryo neurons and one glass dish
  2. Suspend neurons in specialised liquid in said dish
  3. Lay neurons across grid of of 60 electrodes
  4. Wait for cells to form "live computation device", aka "brain"
  5. Connect brain to jet simulator
  6. Teach brain to fly
  7. Bomb Fallujah with squadrons of rat-controlled drone attack aircraft

Alternatively, stick rat brain in jogging Japanese robot, teach it to speak English with a heavy Austrian accent and then send it into the past to kill anyone who might eventually prove a threat to its inevitable rise to global dominance. You get the idea. ®

Bootnote

Thanks to Cameron Walker for alerting us to the chilling "brain-in-a-dish" research project. Stay vigilant.

The Rise of the Machines™

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Boffins unleash robotic cockroach
Ukrainian teen fights the Rise of the Machines
Man in satanic Renault terror ordeal
Killer cyberappliances: Satan implicated
US develops motorised robobollard
Killer cyberloo kidnaps kiddie
A robot in every home by 2010
Cyberappliances attack Italian village
Fire-breathing buses threaten London
Cyberloo blast rocks Stoke-on-Trent
Spanish cyberkiosks claim second victim
Cyberkiosk assaults Spanish teenager
Hi-tech toilet caught on camera
Hi-tech toilet swallows woman