Public: War: Army
Fully Dissociated Soldiers   (+1, -5)  [vote for, against]
Robots with guns at the hands of gamers.

All sorts of government contracts are awarded to companies for specialized robots, like mine-clearing vehicles, pocket rovers with cameras, yadda yadda blah blah blah. None of those are good enough, because you have to have one different device to do each different task, and your soldiers are still out in the field and in harm's way.

'Bakers, I give you the Fully Dissociated Soldier, or FDS.*

The FDS would be a simple tracked robot, standing slightly shorter than a man. Made of stainless steel panels sandwiching Kevlar fibers and ceramic panels to protect the electronic innards, it would basically be a rolling set of cameras with two gun arms and autoclips.

Now, I'm going to do my best to defend this from the obvious WTCTTISITMWIBNIIWR cries, from the crowd which has seen "Short Circuit," but that basic physical design is pretty close to what I'm thinking. Physically. I'm not calling for shoulder-mounted lasers, and I'm not calling for AI or the ability to follow spoken orders and automatically obtain targets, because all of those are just silly and well outside of my scope of knowledge.

A real-time video feed from cameras mounted in the four cardinal directions from the FDS's head would be sent to a console where the controller has a series of data lines including global position, remaining ammunition (in-gun and clips), remaining battery power, et cetera. The video would be windowed, with the largest portion going to the frontal feed, of course. A targeting reticule from the firearms could be overlayed on the video screen, similar to HUD displays.

The arms (and weapons) of the FDS would be managed through a two telemetric arms, measuring the motion of the controller's arms through space and then relaying that to the FDS. Triggers on the ends of the telemetry arms would, of course, fire the weapons. Independent fingers seem a bit much at this point, so guns could be mounted anywhichway you want.

Motion and rotation would be controlled by two foot pedals, corresponding to the two tracks of the FDS. Push both down, go forward. Push right one down, rotate right. Mounting the fulcrum of the pedals to the center, allowing full rocker motion, would make 180-degree turns a snap (left up, right down).

The only serious problem I can easily forsee with this idea is the computers controlling the device. Radio signals travel at the speed of light, but computers do not - so lightweight programming and decent processors are the key. Modern actuators and motor control systems are fully capable of making the necessary joints move at the same speeds as humans, and tracked vehicles can travel pretty quickly.

And there's not a human being out there getting shot at, which is always a plus.

*I admit, I chose what seemed like a pretty unassuming acronym for a reason: most complex acronyms seem really stilted.

EDIT: [gnomethang], I see your link, and I thought about it - but there is no way that such a system would ever take hold, as it doesn't allow for anything like insurgencies, civil wars, and what-have you - so I consider it unrealistic. Besides, it's just like "Robot Jox," which is a movie I hated.
-- shapu, Aug 04 2004

Maybe you should team up with this? http://www.halfbake...a/Alternative_20war
[gnomethang, Oct 04 2004, last modified Oct 05 2004]

Armed drones at war.
[bungston, Oct 04 2004, last modified Oct 06 2004]

(?) Military research in progress
No guns yet, but maybe one day... [suctionpad]

Bomb Disposal Wheelbarrow
Reomte controlled robot that can be armed with shotgun for 'disrupting' bombs. [suctionpad, Oct 04 2004, last modified Oct 06 2004]

Bomb Disposal Wheelbarrow
Reomte controlled robot that can be armed with shotgun for 'disrupting' bombs. [oneoffdave, Oct 04 2004, last modified Oct 05 2004]

What happens when you survey the serried ranks of the opposition and discover that they are hiding 20k away and have sent their own robots out?
-- gnomethang, Aug 04 2004

Same thing you do now when you discover that your enemy's leadership is 20k away and they've sent their own soldiers out....fight it out. Such is the nature of war.
-- shapu, Aug 04 2004

EMPs have never been successfully used on the battlefield, yet could easily stop any existing vehicle currently in use by any army in the world. I thought about it, but don't see it as too much of a threat.

Jamming, I can see that being a problem. Perhaps if communication is lost, the FDS can search for another frequency.
-- shapu, Aug 04 2004

It's a gift I have.

woohoo! It's a neutrally-received concept! *quietly does the no-longer-a-failure dance*
-- shapu, Aug 04 2004

I don't see these as replacing troops, but camera mounted robots definately come in handy in tight spaces.
-- Madai, Aug 04 2004

WTCTTISITMWIBNIIWR cries, from the crowd which has seen "Toys."
-- Knut, Aug 04 2004

How about a cry from the YMBACMTPSARIOTIFYPTR crowd?
-- Size_Mick, Aug 04 2004

Ok - I'll bite (although I am certain to regret it). I just did a 'bakery search and this was the only occurence of YMBACMTPSARIOTIFYPTR. Would you like to explain? I bet you would...(maybe - You Must Be A Complete Moron To Propose Something As...thats as far as I can get)
-- Ichthus, Aug 04 2004

It starts with "You might be a..." but that's as far as I get.

EDIT: "pseudo-science" is probably in there, judging by the tone.
-- shapu, Aug 04 2004

Forget the idea - I'm having fun trying to figure that annotation! (...Propose (or Post) Something As Regrettably Inferior On This...) I'm stuck...and if I'm close so far - it isn't all that bad. Lighten up!
-- Ichthus, Aug 04 2004

This is basically the same idea as the Predator drone, as far as I can tell. Except the drone flies.
-- bungston, Aug 04 2004

True, the predator drone flies as opposed to rolling on tracks, which make it superior to the proposed model of this idea against fast-moving vehicles and for distance recon.

But the predator also is incapable of going up a flight of stairs, or moving along a wall, or having free use of two separate weapons systems in two directions independent of actual motion.
-- shapu, Aug 04 2004

[scout] this is one of the principal subject of the film 'Toys' in which these teams of powerful remote war-machines are defeated by clockwork toys so not something I would trust to defend my country with.
-- Sattamassagana, Aug 04 2004

The israelis use these to "arrest" suspected terrorists. It is much as you describe, a tracked vehicle with a big arm with a claw, an M-16, and maybe some other stuff strapped to it. I've seen videos of them dragging suspects around by the ankles.
-- GutPunchLullabies, Aug 04 2004

ED209 in Robocop, those two cute robots in the space-based film I can never remember the name of [**edit** Black Hole], numerous ongoing military research programmes...this one is definitely out there already.
-- suctionpad, Aug 04 2004

[suctionpad] Silent Running? There're three to begin with but one gets shot off into space.
-- Sattamassagana, Aug 04 2004

Nope, not Silent Running [Sattamassagana], although that was a good film too. Think it was something cheesy, Disney-style, and the robots floated rather than had legs. It had a baddie in a huge black spaceship (a la Battle Beyond the Stars).
-- suctionpad, Aug 04 2004

Perhaps the controllers could be given angel dust? The robots might go cannibal, though.
-- shapu, Aug 04 2004

Black Hole was the film I think, was v. cheesy and (if memory serves me right) ended with them floating harmlessly right through the middle of said singularity - not even a quarter baked.

I think one of the cutsie floating robots died near the end.

Silent Running was way better.

I like the idea of the FDS - perhaps an angle for Doom 4?
-- Gyro, Aug 05 2004

You're exactly right [Gyro]. Cheers.
-- suctionpad, Aug 05 2004

Maximillian was the big (red?) nasty robot with the two sharpened egg whicks. I believe he 'fused' somehow with the Main Man (who's name eludes me!) having passed out the other side of said singularity
-- gnomethang, Aug 05 2004

You Must Be A Complete Moron To Post Such A Ridiculous Idea On The Internet For Your Peers To Ridicule.

Don't let him fool you, that Ichthus guy is pretty perceptive.

Well anyhow, I don't really care for having to think for 10 minutes about what an abbreviation might be when I'm trying to concentrate on the idea behind it. So basically my post was out of irritation. I'll give shapu a croissant just for being a nice guy about it. Sorry, shapu, thanks for being a good sport.
-- Size_Mick, Aug 06 2004

Wow. That's a good one. I'm impressed.

EDIT: You're welcome. I'm not nearly as surly as my Bad Idea Alert idea suggests. Nor am I a big enough guy to justify being surly in the first place, so it all works out in the end.

I never thought this would create a debate about what mechanized death machines were in what pop culture phenomena. I wish I'd suggested air-adjustable breast implants instead, since I might enjoy that one more.
-- shapu, Aug 06 2004

Feel free to enjoy my Nitrogen Breasts concept. The more I think about that one the more I like it.
-- bungston, Aug 06 2004

I can dig it.
-- shapu, Aug 06 2004

This is ridiculous. The "Disassociated Soldiers" would be operated by sociopaths. What do you think "disassociated" means? These sociopaths would leave "work", come home from a day's murder, and check the fridge. We've got enough trouble keeping sociopathic leadership from destroying the world, it's difficult enough to deal with them in everyday life, must we consider a sociopath operating high technology cool? "Not a human being getting shot at." Who do you think sociopaths are shooting now? Ridiculous.
-- Corona, Jun 21 2006

"At Tyrel Corporation, our motto is 'More human, than human'(getting shot at)"
-- normzone, Jun 21 2006

I defeat your concept with a strong electric spark to disrupt the communications.

Robots are too fragile for real combat.
-- Galbinus_Caeli, Jun 21 2006

sorry but the power that one of these robots would need minimum is likely a football feild of solar pannels to charge it, and onboard, the best I can say for power is viral litium ion battery cells packed in every conceivable gap, and oh yeah cooling this beast down... the guns would heat up, this heat will transfer into the bot, fans are out of the question given their reliability, and heat sinks would render this thing an embarrassing impractical imobile pile of junk. It would never survive extended firefights for overheating alone. it may be practical in artic areas, but then again it seems to me that most of the wars are in hot places and if that is to chang in the future God help us cuz the cold contries would cause a world war for certin.
-- wuhisn, May 07 2008

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