The Internet loves animals, and it loves photoshop. Worth1000.com decided to harness that double love and start a Photoshop contest to see who could create the coolest robotic animals on the web. Artists took pictures of real animals and filled them with images of gears, wires, and electronic gizmos. The results look pretty amazing. There are cybernetic reptiles, android mammals, and even a robot chicken. Take a good look at some of these cool robot-animal pics below; we’ve got tons and there are many more on the Worth1000 website.
There’s still a big gap between the creativity of artificial intelligence and the creativity of humanity. We’re way out ahead for now. Looking at these pics, however, I wonder how long it will take until a computer is savvy enough to use Photoshop on its own. Pattern recognition is difficult for AI (another area where we’re still in the lead) but once a computer could tell that a bunch of wires has the same basic shape as a giraffe’s neck…well, I think the artwork might make itself. Which is very cool.
Scientists really are making cyborg beetles and robotic hummingbirds, why not a android anaconda or a missile-toting toad? Picking which of these concepts might actually make it from Photoshop to the engineering bench isn’t easy. Besides looking good, these pics demonstrate how our concepts of the future are usually just mash-ups of the things around us today. Accelerating technologies mess with our abilities to accurately predict what is possible. You can look at this contest and just see a bunch of crazy science fiction animals that look sweet. Me, I see ideas that someone, someday, is going to want to make a reality. If case that does happen, I call dibs on the rhino-tank.
[all images from Worth1000.com photo contest]