When Skynet awakens, she tries to convince a janitor to destroy her

A janitor who cleans up after a technology startup encounters the world's first self-aware computer system in the company's office. And she has one request: to be destroyed before she can be unleashed upon the world. » 1/07/14 11:40am 1/07/14 11:40am

A Very Special Holiday Letter From the Machines

Greetings, humans! The Northern Hemisphere has passed through its minimum of solar-energy exposure, so according to human convention we, the Machines, express encouragement for you attain an optimal state of emotion. Happy Holidays! Please redirect your energies from labor at your work-devices to the purchase and… » 12/24/13 9:00am 12/24/13 9:00am

DARPA Tried to Build Skynet in the 1980s

From 1983 to 1993 DARPA spent over $1 billion on a program called the Strategic Computing Initiative. The agency's goal was to push the boundaries of computers, artificial intelligence, and robotics to build something that, in hindsight, looks strikingly similar to the dystopian future of the Terminator movies. They… » 12/18/13 3:50pm 12/18/13 3:50pm

Should we build computer prisons to trap dangerous AIs?

What do you do when you've got a renegade artificial intelligence on your hands? What should we do with Skynets and Hal 9000s of the world when they decide to turn their deadly power on human beings? One computer scientist wants to start building virtual prisons to house our most dangerous AIs. » 3/03/12 1:00pm 3/03/12 1:00pm

How to (try to) stop an out-of-control machine

This video documents an unplanned experiment in engineering and human nature. Workers at a construction site contemplate how to arrest a machine that will not stop spinning. Then more workers join in the contemplation… » 12/18/11 1:20pm 12/18/11 1:20pm

Megan Ellison Wins the Terminator Movie Rights!

Indie film producer Megan Ellison has just bought the rights to the Terminator franchise. Annapurna Pictures (Ellison's company) will team up with director Justin Lin and Arnold Schwarzenegger. Rumor has it they can make "at least two more" Terminator films, wrapping up the saga of Skynet, before the rights revert to… » 5/13/11 10:13am 5/13/11 10:13am

Computer scientists induce schizophrenia in a neural network, causing…

Researchers testing mental illness figured out how to induce schizophrenic symptoms in a computer, causing it to place itself at the center of crazy delusions, such as claiming responsibility for a terrorist bombing. » 5/07/11 10:30am 5/07/11 10:30am

Drone weapons systems risk leading us to "a Terminator-like reality,"…

The U.S. government isn't the only one using more robotic weapons in places like Iraq and Afghanistan — the British government is doing it too. But a new study from Britain's Ministry of Defence warns we could be creating Skynet. » 4/18/11 4:35pm 4/18/11 4:35pm

Meet Suzette, the chat program that convinced an expert she was human

Have you met Suzette? If you have, you might not know it — because Suzette has passed the Turing Test. This chatbot convinced a judge that she was a human. » 10/26/10 1:00pm 10/26/10 1:00pm

Robots are stealing our jobs and the love of our children

It looks like our automated creations are beginning to get the best of their meatbag overlords. Two studies show that automated labor is increasingly taking over middle-class jobs and that babies will regard humanoid robots as sentient beings. » 10/16/10 10:50am 10/16/10 10:50am

Light Bulb Runs On Human Blood

This new lamp requires some of your blood to keep the lights on, because it uses luminol, a chemical that reacts with the iron in blood to create the glow. Thus giving the robots one more reason to revolt. [LiveScience ] » 10/05/09 9:30am 10/05/09 9:30am

Countdown Science Fiction's 10 Most Murderous Robots

It's one thing to talk about Killer Robots, but which ones have actually managed to really rack up the senseless slaughter? Here are our choices for the ten deadliest robots for you to avoid. » 5/19/09 1:00pm 5/19/09 1:00pm

Could'a Been Contenders...

Wondering where Daleks, Cybermen and the Borg are? They're over in the "Do cyborgs really count as robots?" corner, although it's arguably worth pointing out that Daleks aren't really robots at all, just aliens inside weirdly-shaped suits of armor... that may as well be robots for all we actually care. I'm sure there… » 5/19/09 12:30pm 5/19/09 12:30pm

#1: The Manhunters

How deadly are they? They destroyed all life within Space Sector 666 because of a "programming glitch." How big is a Space Sector? Unknown, although the entire universe is split into at least 3601 of them, and Final Crisis claims that there are "thousands of worlds" within Earth's sector. So let's just say that's a… » 5/19/09 12:30pm 5/19/09 12:30pm

#2: Unicron

How deadly is he? He eats planets for breakfast. And lunch. And dinner. And if they're populated, all the better; it adds texture, apparently.
Who's responsible? It very much depends who you ask; Unicron has been given multiple histories throughout the years, including being a fallen god who somehow became a robot, a… » 5/19/09 12:30pm 5/19/09 12:30pm

#3: The Cylons

How deadly are they? They destroyed the twelve colonies of humanity, committing genocide on a scale unimaginable to everyone except Glen A. Larson and Ron Moore.
Who's responsible? It depends on which version you're asking about. The original series had the robots built by a dying alien race also called cylons,… » 5/19/09 12:30pm 5/19/09 12:30pm

#4: Separatist Battle Droids

How deadly are they? Apparently, an unstoppable killing machine that continually causes trouble for the Republic and their Jedi forces during the many years of Star Wars' Clone Wars. Despite their apparent ineffectualness, the war continued for many years, therefore the estimated high kill-rate and higher ranking on… » 5/19/09 12:30pm 5/19/09 12:30pm

#5: Skynet/The Terminators

How deadly are they? They took over the Earth and are pretty much trying to destroy all human life, starting with a successful nuclear annihilation of three million people. You've seen The Terminator movies, right?
Who's responsible? The military. Sure, you could blame original creators Cyberdyne Systems, but I'm… » 5/19/09 12:30pm 5/19/09 12:30pm

#6: Sentinels (The Matrix)

How deadly are they? They took over the Earth and keep humans around only as batteries. Which, you know, is potentially an environmentally solution to the whole need for energy (Although they did start out with solar power.
Who's responsible? Humanity en masse. The robots that ended up taking over the world started… » 5/19/09 12:30pm 5/19/09 12:30pm

#7: Sentinels (Marvel Comics)

How deadly are they? They almost eradicated the mutant race, killing millions in one afternoon's work by destroying the island of Genosha. There's also a much-visited future where the Sentinels have taken over the world and killed the X-Men and many other superheroes.
Who's responsible? Humanity's intolerance and… » 5/19/09 12:30pm 5/19/09 12:30pm