Scientists at Tokyo Tech have tapped into the neurons of a male silk moth, connecting its tiny brain to a little wheeled robot. When the moth’s sense organs are exposed to female pheremones, the robot performs the silk moth’s mating dance. Sure, it’s cute when it’s made out of Tinkertoys�but what’ll you think when they hook sex-starved moths up to an army of Big Dog Robots and set them loose upon an unsuspecting world?
But these hacked-together cyborg moths pose a real-life instance of the brain-in-a-vat problem. The impulses of a desiring biology are being transmitted to a robot�and thus the robot expresses desire.[via New Scientist]