Rat Brain Robot Uses Cultured Rat Neurons
Cultured rat neurons placed on a multi-electrode array (MEA) form the brain of Gordon the robot. This brain is housed in a special temperature-controlled unit separate from the robot; Bluetooth is used for control signals.
The rat neurons life in a nutrient-rich medium kept at a constant temperature; they organize themselves within several weeks, organizing themselves based on electrical impulses received from sensors in the wheels.
Meet Gordon, a rat neuron-controlled robot.)
"The purpose is to figure out how memories are actually stored in a biological brain," said Kevin Warwick, a professor at the University of Reading and one of the robot's principle architects.
"If we can understand some of the basics of what is going on in our little model brain, it could have enormous medical spinoffs."
(Gordon, a rat neuron-controlled robot video.)
Incredibly, different MEA-based brains show different personalities; Gordon has several 'spare' brains that can be plugged in.
"It's quite funny -- you get differences between the brains," said Warwick. "This one is a bit boisterous and active, while we know another is not going to do what we want it to."
Science fiction readers are thoroughly familiar with this idea;
laminated mouse brains are used to pilot interstellar ships in the 1962 story Think Blue, Count Two by Cordwainer Smith.
See also Peter Watts'
head cheese from his 1999 novel Starfish, which is a pretty exact match for Gordon's brain.
Breitbart; thanks to Moira for prodding me into doing this story.
Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 8/15/2008) Follow this kind of news
| | Email | RSS | Blog It Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit
you like to contribute a story tip?
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and . add
Comment/Join discussion ( Back On) ( 3 )
Related News Stories -
Bacteria Now Make Biofuel Like Oil
'They have ... germs that eat pretty near anything, and produce oil as a waste product.'- Hal Clement, 1950.
Youthful Brain With A Flip Of A Molecular Switch
I need all the brain plasticity I can get.
Human 'Quadruple Helix' DNA
'Their genetic structure, based on the quadruple sterated octohelix...'- Douglas Adams, 1978.
The Plastic Eaters - Amazon Fungus Lives On Plastic
'the smell of the rotting plastic began to hang permanently in the air...'- Davis/Pedlar, 1971
Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!)
is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for
the Invention Category that interests
you, the Glossary, the Invention
Timeline, or see what's New.
MIT Robot Cheetah Video Shows Gait Transition
'The legs are long, curled way up to deliver power, like a cheetah's.'
TrackingPoint Smart Rifle
Not your typical 'smart bullet' approach.
'Hello, Computer!' Google Now Highlighted at IO13
Sky City's 220 Stories Are Go
'It rested among green parklands and... stood in total isolation, a glittering block of whites and flashing windows dotted with colors.'
CARMAT Bioprosthetic Total Human Heart Replacement
'George Walt's corporate existence proved the workability of wholly mechanical organs...'
Personal Sniffer Robots
'...The ticking combinations of the olfactory system of the hound.'
Physical Exam? We've Got Apps
See the future of handheld, personal medical devices.
The Interplanetary Internet, Vint Cerf Speaking
'This was the center of Interplanetary Communications.'
Drosophila Robotica, The Mechanical Fly
'... the Scarab [flying robot] buzzed into the great workroom as any intruding insect might...'
Robo-Raven Flapping Wing Robot Bird
'When he had first built them, they had been crude indeed, flying mechanisms with little more than a reflex-response unit.'
Japan's Nursing Home Robot Plan
Let's make the Roujin Z-0001 Robotic Bed!
Samsung Smart TVs With Gesture Control
'He waved his hand and the circuit switched abruptly.'
Swiss HCPVT Giant Photovoltaic 'Flower'
'...leaning against one of the slender stalks of a sunshade-photocell collector.'
Mini-Livers Made By 3D Printer
Organleggers may experience an employment downturn.
Smartphone Sensor System Tracks Gunfire
'Sound trackers on the roof could zero in on weapons action...'
Bacteria Now Make Biofuel Like Oil
'They have ... germs that eat pretty near anything, and produce oil as a waste product.'
More SF in the News Stories
More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories