from cryptogon/register uk: Famed US military mad-scientist bureau DARPA (the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency) is engaged in an effort to grow/build cyborg moths for use as spies. No, really.
The program is called Hybrid Insect Micro Electro Mechanical Systems, or HI-MEMS. In it, the arguably over-caffeined DARPA boffins aim to construct a tiny lepidopterine infiltration borg by growing a living moth around a "micro-mechanical system".
"Animal world has provided mankind with locomotion over millennia," says Dr Amit Lal, DARPA HI-MEMS program manager...
In a Times article today, Rod Brooks of MIT's computer science and artifical intelligence lab (CSAIL), was quoted on the insectoid cyber-infiltrator project.
"This is going to happen," said Mr Brooks. "It's not science like developing the nuclear bomb, which costs billions of dollars. It can be done relatively cheaply... There's going to be more and more technology in our bodies... there's going to be a lot of moral debates."
For now, DARPA only aims to manufacture chipped moths, which it reckons to send into suspected terrorist facilities (presumably including al-Qaeda linen cupboards - that'll show them)...
Meanwhile, in what can only be yet another chilling media coincidence, other cyborg-related news broke today. Reuters reports that Arnold Schwarzenegger - the man who gave such a convincing portrayal of a soulless killer machine wearing human flesh as a disguise - is spearheading a new biological research initiative as governor of California.
"We are as powerful as any one can ever be on stem cell research," Mr Terminator reportedly said.
Reuters also noted that: "Stem cells are a kind of master cell for the body, capable of growing into various types of cell or tissue and cell. Scientists hope to use the cells to repair tissue damaged by disease or injury."
Terrifyingly, this mirrors the language of DARPA's Lal as he describes his process for chipping-up innocent creatures and turning them into zombie slaves under computer control.
"The renewed tissue growth around the MEMS will tend to heal, and form a reliable and stable tissue-machine interface..."
That's it. We're down to the bunker with a whole lot of survival rations. And bug spray.
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