This just in: you can now buy a ball that can observe, attack, and generally scare the living bejeezus out of people.
A large black ball, originally designed by Swedish scientists for use on Mars, could be the latest weapon in the war against burglars.For some reason, this particular advance in technology creeps me out more than the idea of cloning (Raelians and all), bioterror, or even being forced to sit through the Coming Attractions on rented DVDs. And it really reminds me of the cult classic British show, The Prisoner, in which Patrick McGoohan is a spy trapped in the unsettling/cheery/psychedelic prison called The Island. Those creepy undulating white blobs (well, they looked kind of like blown up sheets – but the music was whacko!) would track down escapees and subdue them with idiot force and blind delight.
The device, developed at the University of Uppsala, acts as a high-tech security guard capable of detecting an intruder thanks to either radar or infra-red sensors. Once alerted, it can summon help, sound an alarm or pursue the intruders, taking pictures.
It is capable of traveling at 20mph, somewhat faster than a human being. Even worse for intruders, the robot ball can still give chase over mud, snow and water.
While the current version can only raise the alarm, it could be adapted to corner an intruder if the customer wanted…
That’s when the reconditioning would begin.
See where this is going?