Saturday, January 17, 2009


The swarm-bot concept and implementations are impressive, but what was the scientist(/performance artist?)'s motivation for using a living human girl (the symbol of the hope and future of humanity?) for this demonstration, rather than a dummy (dressed in fatigues, say), mannequin, bag of flour, or something else? 

Here's my kwik remote psychoanalysis: The creator(s) see their creations as beautiful. To them, they are like children. They want you to see them as cute, colorful, intelligent, helpful tools. They are probably tired of people seeing these as potential vacuum cleaners or luggage trucks and want to jump-start the public imagination to see the swarm-bots in hospitals, refugee camps, de-mining, doing humanitarian work and winning the Miss Universe contest. They are protecting the children. In short, some of the humanity of the child should rub off on the swarm-bots just by being photographed together. They think this is good PR. 

There is another way to see it, based in the animal brain and subconscious. As humans, we instinctively feel protective toward small children. We also interpret the small moving things as animals like rats. Their behavior is that of a scavenger, or feeding behavior. It seems they will drag the girl off to their lair first. They seem to have incapacitated the girl with a tranquilizer or muscle relaxant, or perhaps she fears their power or is trying to trick them into thinking she is dead. As living things with a hive-mind, they will seek to become stronger, the will to power, probably by injecting nanobots into her bloodstream, where they will gain control of the pain and pleasure centers of her brain and contribute to the Swarm by luring other humans to where they can also be captured and absorbed by the swarm. 

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