Quote of the day, corpse-eating robot pushback edition.

“We completely understand the public’s concern about futuristic robots feeding on the human population, but that is not our mission,”
– Harry Schoell, CEO of Cyclone Power Technologies

(Via Wired, via Genrewonk)

For those just catching up now, Cyclone Power Technologies is one of the companies working on the Energetically Autonomous Tactical Robot (EATR™), which uses ‘biomass’ for fuel* (it’s also steam-powered, which is an important consideration right there). I’m not sure whether this qualifies as ‘good’ or ‘bad’ publicity: calling your biomass-eating robot ‘EATR’ suggests that you’re prepared to milk whatever you can get for the full effect. And what’s with this ‘green’ nonsense? I mean, come on: EATR burns things for their steam. By definition something like that has a ‘carbon footprint,’ to use the theological term.

Moe Lane

*Which means that it doesn’t do this:

Which is actually a pity.

Corpse-feeding military robots.

What could possibly go wrong with this? (via @allahpundit)

A Maryland company under contract to the Pentagon is working on a steam-powered robot that would fuel itself by gobbling up whatever organic material it can find — grass, wood, old furniture, even dead bodies.

Robotic Technology Inc.’s Energetically Autonomous Tactical Robot — that’s right, “EATR” — “can find, ingest, and extract energy from biomass in the environment (and other organically-based energy sources), as well as use conventional and alternative fuels (such as gasoline, heavy fuel, kerosene, diesel, propane, coal, cooking oil, and solar) when suitable,” reads the company’s Web site.

That “biomass” and “other organically-based energy sources” wouldn’t necessarily be limited to plant material — animal and human corpses contain plenty of energy, and they’d be plentiful in a war zone.

Wait. Steam-powered?

OK, that upgrades it slightly from Disturbing to Disturbing, Yet Slightly Awesome. Something like that would make the retro-future so actinically bright, you’d have to wear goggles.