Sunday, 21 December 2014
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Lab-grown human brains could control robots, says Kevin Warwick

Professor Kevin Warwick has built a robot controlled by rat brain cells grown in a lab - and wants to do the same with human neurons.

Watch out for the next issue of The Engineer (3 Oct) for an in-depth interview with Kevin Warwick.


Readers' comments (8)

  • Sounds great to fight the Parkinson- Alzheimer gang, but for the rest, as usual quite a few scary military applications in sight....should I say helas... but then again it's in the human nature isn't it?
    Ethically how would a robot with a human brain be considered ?
    For the fun, how would you name these ? Roban, Humbot ????

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  • Thanks for your comment, but can you tell us what Helas means please?

  • It would seem to me that this work is crossing the line of ethically acceptable engineering.

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  • Can't see that the work crosses an ethical boundary - it's the application which would do that. In a 3D world everything has two sides; Nobel and Oppenheimer recognised this. It doesn't mean that we shouldn't acquire the knowledge. Or should we create some artificial Amish-like line - this far but no further?

    PS I think Alain means "alas"

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  • I think there was once a time when surgery on a living person was considered to be ethically immoral. Our views about things can change; some of mine certainly have.

    If this work helps those unfortunate enough to suffer from otherwise untreatable conditions which most of us would find pretty intolerable if we suffered from them ourselves, then I see no reason to object to it.

    A Frankenstein is fortunately still some way off, and will be for at least our childrens' generation to worry about. In the meantime there are suffering people who need all the help they can get.

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  • @Alain - arent they cyborgs?

    @Stephen Dickinson - dont be such a prude I want me some Ghost in the Shell robot bodies

    the future cant get here fast enough

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  • Do you think it may be possible for a human brain to retain information in stasis over long periods of time ?
    Wow, the future is an amazing place :)

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  • Robots with rat brains? We have them already - our town halls are infested with them...

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  • Because we can - doesn't mean we should.

    In any case, playing God with organic brain material may have unintended consequences.

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