In 1982, George Lucas introduced one of the most ridiculous weapons in film history:
The imperial All-Terrain Armored Transport (AT-AT), which used unnecessarily slow, plodding movement toward the enemy to draw out the battle for no logical reason. But, dammit, they were cool raised to the power of cool! These gigantic armored assault camels were totally badass from this 10 year-old’s perspective. I wondered if they would ever be made for real. My dad, ex-Navy, told me how utterly impractical they were as weapons.
Screw practicality, these things were cool!
Fast-forward to 2012, and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA … aka the closest the US military has come to publicly funding mad scientists … aka the people who really did invent the internets), has advanced evil science fiction transportation for use by the US military. Meet the Legged Squad System Support (LS3):
In addition to carrying equipment for a military squad, it can also follow simple auditory and visual cues.
OK, it isn’t armed … but given that this is a military robot, you know they are already looking to throw a couple of guns on this thing in addition to advanced armor plating. I am also thinking it is not useful on stealth missions.
The light saber: still on hold.
Oh, in case you are thinking that this is too slow … DARPA already has a faster version on the way:
It is slated for outdoor testing in 2013, and has a top speed exceeding that of Usain Bolt’s world record.
The world may be going to hell in a hand basket, but we can still make cool things.