Latest By

Artificial Intelligence
Data Storage
Input Devices
Living Space
Space Tech
Virtual Person

"What we're doing pop culturally is like burning the rain forest. The biodiversity of pop culture is really, really in danger."
- William Gibson

Restraining Bolt  
  A device that makes sure a robot does what you want (rather than what it wants).  

As robots become more sophisticated, and are given the capacity for choosing goals and working to meet them, you may want a way to make sure a robot does what you want.

Luke's gaze was drawn irresistibly back to the hologram. "I wonder who she is."

He reached again for the Artoo's internal controls, and the robot scurried backward again, squeaking a blue streak. "He says there's a restraining separator bolt that's circuiting out his self motivational components," Threepio translated. "He suggests that if you move the bolt he might be able to repeat the entire message," Threepio finished uncertainly.

Selecting the proper tool, Luke reached down into the exposed circuitry and popped the restraining bolt free.

The first noticeable result of this action was that the portrait disappeared.

From Star Wars, by George Lucas.
Published by Del Rey in 1976
Additional resources -

For an illustrative tale on the subject of computers that do what they want, see the chirpsithra supercomputer, from a great short story by Larry Niven.

Compare to the android safety mechanism from Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep (1968) by Philip K. Dick.

Comment/Join this discussion ( 1 ) | RSS/XML | Blog This |

Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from Star Wars
  More Ideas and Technology by George Lucas
  Tech news articles related to Star Wars
  Tech news articles related to works by George Lucas

Articles related to Misc
Is There A Subterranean Ocean?
The Robotic Shopping Cart Of The Future
Arctic Resource Jackpot An Old Wish
Marie Curie's Papers Still Radioactive

Want to Contribute an Item? It's easy:
Get the name of the item, a quote, the book's name and the author's name, and Add it here.





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.





More News

Soft Robotics - Now With 3D Printed Sensors!
'A series of chemelectric afferent nerve-analogues, which permitted it to gauge to an ounce the amount of pressure necessary to snap a bone...'

AI Tool Lynx Insight And The Cybernetic Newsroom
'The structure,... was once a great homeostatic newspaper, the New York Times. It printed itself directly below us...'

Espresso Telescope Searches For Exoplanets
'These instruments were the wonderful ones our astronomers had perfected.'

Dune Fans! Metal-Organic Frameworks Make Science Fiction Real
'Dew collectors,' he muttered, enchanted by the simple beauty of such a scheme.

Manned Maneuvering Unit From 1984
'The glittering little rocket bolted to the black iron behind him.'

Astronaut Gets Younger In Space
'So what we're looking for now is not an antibiotic - an anti-life drug - but an anti-agathic, an anti-death drug...'

Blockchain Used To Verify Election Results
'Any adult could punch into the phone his or her code, followed by a yes or no.'

IJOP Integrated Joint Operations Platform China's Minority Report?
'All day long the idiots babbled, imprisoned in their special high-backed chairs...'

HushMe Bluetooth Device Reinvents The Hush-A-Phone
'Talking into a hush-a-phone which he had plugged into the telephone jack...'

Ultrathin Brain Needle Developed At MIT
Putting drugs into a selected cubic millimeter within the living brain.

More SF in the News

More Beyond Technovelgy

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise | - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.