April 6, 2011

But ‘as recent research shows, the more human a robot looks, the more likely the Homo sapiens at its controls may be tempted to make the droids go Rambo on their foes’

According to a 2004 Darpa survey, US military officers believe that humanoid robots will begin filling out infantry units as early as 2025. Those android grunts will likely be descendants of Petman, a bipedal Boston Dynamics robot funded by Darpa that walks more gracefully than C-3PO.

And they may take aesthetic cues from Vecna Robotics’ BEAR, a military prototype that features a rounded head studded with soulful Bette Davis eyes.

comments

  1. Joel Bernstein on April 6th, 2011 at 9:27 am

    I’m skeptical, for the same reason I don’t think we’ll have powered exoskeleton suits by then either: both would require a major breakthrough in battery technology that’s impossible to predict.

  2. Joel Bernstein on April 6th, 2011 at 9:32 am

    And if we do get that breakthrough, humanoid military drones won’t even be close to the coolest things it’d enable us to build.

  3. Carole Corlew on April 6th, 2011 at 12:55 pm

    My robot can whip your robot.

  4. Joel Bernstein on April 6th, 2011 at 12:56 pm

    You bought a whipping robot?