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Propaganda Posters For The Impending Robot Takeover

If we learned anything from the fiasco that followed Orson Welles’ 1938 radio broadcast of <I>The War of the Worlds</I>, it’s that we must constantly keep reminding ourselves of the differences between art and reality. Before viewing the following pictures, use this as your mantra:  It’s only an illustration. It’s only an illustration. For now.

Animator, illustrator and deviantART user Tom Kyzivat’s posters of Giant Freakin’ Robots ominously calling for humanity’s doom recall the early days of non-charming robots, using Fritz Lang as an obvious influence. Though the images aren’t new, they’re particularly timeless and beautiful, and also prove that, no matter what you think you’re expecting, robots will always be one step ahead.

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Boston Dynamic’s Latest Robot Can Throw Cinder Blocks Farther Than You

Meet BigDog. BigDog may very well give you nightmares, or at least further your paranoia that, day by day, robots are inching closer and closer to staging a violent coup and taking over the world. Now they’re learning to throw, and not just to throw ball or how to play catch with you kids in the back yard when you’re too busy, this guy chucks cinder blocks all over the place, for fun.

Similar to their pack mule robot, Boston Dynamics went ahead and added a throwing arm, for some reason. Maybe their end game is to create an automaton to perform mindless repetitive tasks like stacking sandbags during a disaster like a flood or a hurricane. That makes sense, but we’ve all seen enough movies that we know the ultimate result will be that the robots become sentient and rise up against their human overlords in open revolt.

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A Swarm Of Robots Builds A Bridge In A Swimming Pool

We’ve all been there: stranded, needing to get across a random body of water, but alas, there’s not a bridge in sight. Well, this swarm of autonomous, water-borne robots may be just the answer you’re looking for. Check out this video of this fleet of robots—called the Tactically Expandable Maritime Platform, or TEMP—coming together to build a custom bridge.

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Stop The Killer Robots Campaign Hopes To, Well, Stop The Killer Robots

Drones

It only took decades upon decades of stories, movies, TV shows, and video games for humans to take a stand against the Killer Freakin’ Robots that won’t be programmed to sing and dance upon humanity’s grave, but they’ll do it anyway.

In April, the “Stop the Killer Robots campaign” will launch at the British House of Commons, brought together by a globally conscious group of notable academics, Nobel Peace Prize laureates, and others who hope to reach a worldwide agreement to take preemptive action by banning the use of autonomous robots, such as drones, in wartime. With technology advancing far beyond the paperwork that’s supposed to guide the laws and morals behind that paperwork, drastic steps need to be taken in order to avoid a rise of the machines. And not just because of Nick Stahl’s John Connor. The group is hoping for results similar to the actions taken against cluster bombs and landmines. Make love, not war-crazed automatons.

“These things are not science fiction; they are well into development,” said Dr. Noel Sharkey, a robotics and artificial A.I. expert and Sheffield University professor. “The research wing of the Pentagon in the US is working on the X47B [unmanned plane] which has supersonic twists and turns with a G-force that no human being could manage, a craft which would take autonomous armed combat anywhere in the planet.”

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The Walking Ostrich Robot: Russia’s Gift To The World

Not every robot in the world needs to be sleek, shiny, and full of gun turrets in order to be badass. Sometimes the goofiest-looking bots are the most impressive, due to the ideas and craftsmanship involved. And, of course, goofy robots have far less of a chance of destroying humanity, so it’s pretty easy to hop on their bandwagon.

Nothing is hopping in the video below, but there is some walking involved. Four Russian robo-thusiasts who call themselves Konstantin Ivanov created a walking ostrich robot using only $1,500 worth of wood, electronics, and ingenuity. Presumably vodka was also in the mix, guiding their decision to model the robot after an ostrich, instead of one of nature’s more vicious birds, like the peacock or titmouse. I make fun, but this huge chunk of mobility is quite a sight, and I’d be honored to own one as a pet.

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Robot Makes Schooling Possible For Homebound Second Grader

While I freely profess the damnation and death of all humans will come at the bionic hands of robots, I am fairly close to being able to admit that not all robots will be complicit in our downfall. AutoMeeS recently released a smartphone and tablet-cleaning robot, and I don’t think that little guy is going to be taking over anything any time soon. And I rather enjoy the recent upswing of robots standing in for children who are unable to make it into school, though these will obviously be the brains behind the Robot Revolution. You take the good with the bad, I guess.

Seven-year-old Devon Carrow is the latest to use the VGo telepresence robot to remotely attend school, which in this case is Winchester Elementary in West Seneca, NY, a school that accepted young Devon’s robo-student where other schools had balked at the robot’s camera for classroom use. That’s what having George Orwell on the reading list will do to people.

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