Archive for November, 2007

Ancient Sea Scorpion was Bigger than a Human

November 21, 2007

http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20071121/sc_nm/scorpion_fossil_dc_1

This is as critter akin to a lobster. They found a fossilized claw that put the whole creature at about 8 feet long. Probably about the size of a big bull sea lion. How scary would that be? For the answer, see the inevitable thriller about the people who accidentally run across a group of these things that are still around.

One of the problems with monster SF is that things with exoskeletons don’t usually get very big (gravity, inefficiency with exterior supports, the scaling of surface area, and the amount of energy to create a big exoskeleton). The article mentions the possibility of higher O2 concentrations in the air. Also, these were sea creatures, so they have buoyancy to help counteract gravity.

Now imagine what sorts of creatures could evolve on a low gravity planet with high O2 levels. Throw in some stranded astronauts and the story writes itself.

Children bonding with robots

November 6, 2007

http://technology.newscientist.com/channel/tech/dn12879-giggling-robot-becomes-one-of-the-kids-.html?feedId=online-news_rss20

Now, if this isn’t a sign of impending doom (via a Star Trek inspired plot), I don’t know what is. THEY have built a robot that giggles when children touch it’s head. It wanders around a room full of kids and avoids them, sitting occasionally, and over a few weeks, the children seem to be bonding to it.

Is the government looking for more ways to make the population into automatons? Are aliens prepping the way for an easy take-over? Is this a preview of Battlestar Galactica science gone awry?

I don’t know, but if I wrote it, it wouldn’t be a giggle robot for toddlers. It would be a slapping robot for politicians who make speeches to congress when they are supposed to be asking the witness a question. NO! Bad senator. Go to your room for wasting everyone’s time.