Archive for the ‘Terminator’ Category

Meet Pepper – Adorable Robot Face of Our Demise

Thursday, September 4th, 2014

Created as a joint effort between SoftBank and French robotics company Aldebaran, Pepper a preciously adorable robot, was unveiled recently in stores throughout Tokyo.

The humans behind Pepper are hoping that everyone will want him to join their family in the very near future.

Pepper laughs, tells jokes, dances and probably quietly mocks us behind his adorable little face as he and his ilk develop their future plans.

Like a toddler or a pupper looking for a handout, Pepper constantly keeps eye contact with any human that he comes in contact with, can hold discussions about the weather and…stuff…and can do so in about 17 languages.

Determining the emotional status of humans via facial recognition and tone of our voices is another feature of the almost child-like metal man. Using algorithms and collected data from facial recognition studies, Pepper will seek to interact with humans in a way that will begin building the bridge across the vast ‘uncanny valley’ that exists right now between natural human behavior and robotically programmed behavior.
Looking to introduce him as a companion for seniors and as the gateway drug to having family service robots his price tag comes in under an affordable $2,000.
Masayoshi Son, Softbank’s CEO, stated during the press conference surrounding the unveiling of Pepper, “Several thousand Peppers are going to learn at the store (where the unveiling took place). Everything they learned and gained, is going to be accumulated into the cloud-based service. So that can be accelerating the evolution of the collective wisdom.”
Thousands of Peppers…connected in a hive-like mind.
Not too frightening, right?
He’s not even really mobile.
Until son added, “Our vision is to create an affectionate robot that can understand people’s feelings. Then autonomously, it will take action.”
Great.
Like when a bunch of silver, bipedal robots with glowing red eyes in the future autonomously ‘took action’?

[Above Science's YouTube Channel]

Japan Unveils Disturbing Future of Newscasters

Wednesday, June 25th, 2014

Meet Otonoroid (the more stately female android on the right) and Kodomoroid (the awkward android on the left).

Unveiled in Japan as part of a future museum exhibit asking, “What is human?”, these two androids are accessing news stories in real time and delivering them to the audience. Not only can Kodomoroid ‘read’ the incoming news reports, she can translate them from various languages and read them aloud in other languages.

Who needs live human newscasters who require bathroom breaks, hair and make-up and can only work for a measly few hours before they get tired and need rest? Networks who buy news-reading androids and have a labor budget to swing under…that’s who.

As awkward as this demonstration is, it’s an interesting sign as to how robots are slowly becoming more and more integrated into our public lives.

While it all seems innocent and even a ‘cute’ demonstration of some oddly moving animatronics, it’s when Kodomoroid says something that should illicit a little, “Aw, Hell no!” from many of us human folk that we’re reminded of the possibility of a frightening robot-run future:

“My dream, when I grow older, is to have my own TV program. If you hear about a newscaster job, please, let me know.”

[DesignBoom]

Precursor to SkyNet Begins Testing in England!

Friday, January 17th, 2014

For whatever reason, humankind and the geniuses that propel the science of robotics have impossibly ignored every science fiction film and book that has foretold of the impending replacement of soft, squishy people by cold, metallic machines that become better than us in every way imaginable.

In the latest ‘great idea’ to rid us of ourselves, several universities in England and Phillips Electronics have partnered to expedite the entire process by creating a cloud-based central control for four robots in a mocked-up hospital room.

Instead of several robots working on individual tasks, those same robots can all work together to accomplish one task cooperatively using a single hive-mind system dubbed RoboEarth!

Sounding more like some kind Monster Truck event at the local fair, RoboEarth will allow various robotic systems to collaboratively solve problems.

What does that mean? It means that one robot will use heat signatures to let several hovering drones know where the last remnants of humanity are so that we the robot takeover will go in a very organized and methodical fashion than Hollywood’s silly notion that we’ll rally together and be victorious.

Rene van de Molengraft, the head human exterminator of the RoboEarth project, states, “At its core RoboEarth is a world wide web for robots: a giant network and database repository where robots can share information and learn from each other.”

With Google’s recent robotics acquisitions, (check out the January 12th WeirdThings podcast) we’re pretty sure we’re all on our way out.

Anyone else just side-eye their Roomba?

[BBC Tech News]

Skynet’s Future Soldiers on Display at Fort Benning

Sunday, October 13th, 2013

Over a weekend at Fort Benning, human inventors of automated robotic war machines showed off the devices that Skynet will probably use against us when it goes live.

Sorry ’bout your first rule, Asimov.

[Computer World]

Robot Learns to Throw…Humanity Flinches!

Saturday, March 9th, 2013

Anyone who’s been following the evolution of Boston Dynamics has been creeped out at one point by their BigDog robot. BigDog is a quadraped robot that has learned a lot of tricks since it was a terrifying little puppy of a machine. It balances itself even when an engineer makes an attempt at cow-tipping it, it ambles over the most diverse terrain ever laid out in front of a robot, follows humans like an obedient pack-mule and even understands what humans are saying to it.

Each stage in BigDog’s learning process has brought with it a level of creepiness.

But BigDog’s newest trick just put the nail in the coffin of humankind’s demise.

BigDog now throws things.

And what it’s throwing isn’t a spitball. It’s not a paper airplane. It’s not throwing Mardi Gras beads. It’s not a fun frisbee.

Nope. Not anything even remotely associated with enjoyable OR fun…

It’s throwing cinder blocks.

30 pound, concrete cinder blocks…

And it’s throwing them easier and more accurately than you could ever hope to throw one.

Which once again goes to prove that we shouldn’t be worried about the robots taking over in the future…

We should be worried about our own fellow humans helping them.

[Boston Dynamics YouTube Channel]

Disturbing Robot ‘Baby’ Makes Ultra-Realistic Faces – Smiles at the End of Mankind

Wednesday, January 9th, 2013

In our article about the other new toddler robot called Roboy we mentioned Diego-san. Here’s your first look into the robotic wagon-train that’s leaving Uncanny Valley slowly but surely.

When John Connor shows up and SkyNet goes live it won’t be the T1000s we’re worried about.

Why?

We’ll be too terrified by something that’s already been here.

Robot babies.

And you can tear that cute baby robot picture off the wall of your imagination…because robot babies are about as far as you can get from being ‘cute’.

Because we’re not satisfied with making skeletal robots that look like mechanical grim reapers, the University of San Diego has created a ridiculously amazing and disturbingly realistic over-sized one-year-old in order to study the cognitive development of infants.

“Its main goal is to try and understand the development of sensory motor intelligence from a computational point of view. It brings together researchers in developmental psychology, machine learning, neuroscience, computer vision and robotics. Basically we are trying to understand the computational problems that a baby’s brain faces when learning to move its own body and use it to interact with the physical and social worlds.”

As we continue grinning and patting ourselves on the back about our advances in robot technology and march ourselves into our own demise, you can rest assured that the armies of creepy robot babies are just going to keep on smiling that same frightening smile that’ll remind us of ourselves when we were so excited about our accomplishments in robotics.

Until then just keep hitting the replay button and shuddering at Diego-san’s facial expressions.

[Gizmag.com]

South Korea’s Deadly New Border Weapon!

Tuesday, October 23rd, 2012

Because there’s not enough tension already in North and South Korea, a company has now developed what’s being hailed as a ‘super gun’ to help keep an eyeball on the demilitarized zone between the Hatfield/McCoy-style rivalry amongst the two countries.

The Super aEgis II is one of the most intimidating weapons ever to back up someone’s ‘No Trespassing’ policies. Featuring a thermal camera, a laser range-finder and can nail and destroy a human-sized target from almost 2 miles away. Because it’s designed as a modular system, the aEgis II’s ‘gun pod’ can be replaced and fitted with various other life-destroying joys like surface-to-air missiles or similar goodies yet to be revealed by its manufacturer.

What’s disturbing about the Super aEgis II isn’t that it can destroy a target before the target’s even aware it’s being destroyed…it’s that once Skynet takes over or some 12 year-old hacker decides to add them to their toybox? We’re all in a lot of trouble.

[Reuters]

9/11 Is Responsible For The New Love Robot

Monday, January 11th, 2010

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Amongst all the hubbub today about Roxxxy the new amorous robot designed to satisfy your carnal desires, comes this little tidbit buried in an article by The Money Times

Hines inspiration for Roxxxy came from the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks.

“I had a friend who passed away in 9/11. I promised myself I would create a program to store his personality, and that became the foundation for Roxxxy True Companion,” said Hines.

He feels his creation is not only for recreation and fun but also for people with problems of sexual dysfunction.

A lost friend on one of the grimmest days in modern American history ends with a fully functioning robot engineered to unleash primal delight. Figures.

Is this the ultimate weapon for the inevitable Terminator: Salvation robot apocalypse?

Sunday, May 10th, 2009

Preparing for the inevitable Terminator: Salvation robot apocalypse a five part series

We here at Weird Things aren’t just committed to telling you about all the weird things going on in your world, we’re here to do something about it! As every day brings us closer to the robot apocalypse envisioned in the Terminator saga, we’ve been preparing ourselves for a fighting chance. Our editors (actually just this one; the others looked at me funny when I suggested this) decided to design the ultimate weapon to use in the front lines of the man versus machine war.

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