This blog is a random collection of information, partly in support of my quotations web site (note: relocated to new URL, June 23/09). Other topics include wine, military news, economics, history, libertarianism, and other random things which happen to strike my fancy. Backup site is at (if there are no posts showing, hit the backup blog for explanation). Comments have been turned off, as the spam was getting too much to handle. Comments can be posted on the new site (still under construction) at, where I'm cross-posting most items as of July 10th.

July 14, 2009

The next step towards a robot-centric army

Stepping out of the Matrix back-story and moving to replace the human soldier, the EATR:

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.

Just a tad creepy . . .

H/T to Alex Haropulos for the link.

Posted by Nicholas at July 14, 2009 12:59 PM

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