Thursday, May 31, 2007

Cyborg Moths? You Bet.

I just wanted to quickly flag a really cool (albeit poorly written) article from the Register on the new cyborg moths being developed by DARPA.
"This is going to happen," said Mr [Rod] Brooks. "It's not science like developing the nuclear bomb, which costs billions of dollars. It can be done relatively cheaply."

"A bunch of experiments have been done over the past couple of years where simple animals, such as rats and cockroaches, have been operated on and driven by joysticks, but this is the first time where the chip has been injected in the pupa stage and 'grown' inside it.

"Once the moth hatches, machine learning is used to control it."
Soft, chewy insect on the outside? Delightfully crunchy robot on the inside? Sounds delicious! Of course, the intelligence-gathering ramifications of this technology can't be overestimated. It's about time we put our six-legged friends to good use.

By the way--DARPA must be the absolute coolest place to work. Ever.

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