With the advent of Watson, a computer which can interpret natural human language (along with the nuances in its meaning)—which in itself should be a bit scary—here’s yet another video from the ongoing Quadrotor project going on at UPenn. Now these wasp-sounding robots can autonomously build structures:
I wonder if they can collect minerals for you, too…
Yeah. And browsing through their Youtube channel, I found an older video demonstrating surveillance capabilities:
Metal Gear Solid 2 called these “Cyphers.”
More along these lines, here’s an interesting article (if kind of wordy) about evolving robots. The gist is that if you’re programming a robot to learn to walk on its own, it will be more effective to learn a simpler form of walking first. That is, if you want a 4-legged robot to learn to get around from scratch, best first to give it two legs and have it learn to use those. The analogy they make is between tadpoles and frogs, which go from two to four-legged movement.
So, long story short: be afraid. It’s only a matter of time before the robots take over.
On a lighter note (and while you still have control over your PC), here’s a sweet trick for cooling your rig. Almost the entire United States has been having an exceptionally cold winter—and Oregon is no exception. If you’ve been having issues with your computer overheating, or are looking to overclock your computer (easier than it sounds, but be careful), you can keep your rig cool by using a drier air-duct to connect the outside to just your computer. Read more about that on the Hackaday article, “Outside-air cooled PC.”