one thing this article misses is that one of the keys to artificial organisms is there ability to evolve over time how the fuck did they miss that one eh?
i want a robot that has visual recognition software , that allows it to identify power outlets, and then it will have a long snaking protrusion around its abdomen with a plug on one end so that it can plug in and repower its battery's..
it will need a bit of memory too so that it can go back whenever it wants to get more juice..
it will need a timer in its head that will always keep it in reach of power supplies, so the timer will basically say you are too far away from any juice before you will need a recharge so you cant venture further..
it will want to find as many power supplies as possible..
it will need internal mapping software ,, so not just visual regocnition but it will also need memory recognition.. basically it will use its visual input to create internal maps of everything..
it could possibly do this in a 2d sense ,, where it will have *paths* basicaly it will have its starting point .. when it is turned on, every time it changes direction this could be considered a new path .. the visual coupled with some sortof left right forward backward orientation directions ,, it can setup an internal memory of where it went.. so whenever it would try to remember where its been it would do a database search through its paths list. basically retracing its steps until it figures out where it needs to go.
in order for it to self replicate you will need to program an expert system into it, this could be ridiculously difficult .. unless the robot also carries a 3d printer on board. then in this case if it has a 3d printer onboard you could simply program the robot to find the proper materials maybe with a spectrometer ( the thingies the mars rovers have to identiy materials?).. it could build a copy of itself piece by piece and then assemble it .. so far the form of this bot will be maybe something with legs but legs with wheels or treads on the bottom , then it must a 3d printer somewhere, preferable the belly :) and it also needs soemthing to connect to power outlets (that should be around the crotch so it can be the penis plug !) coupled with the 3d printer it needs assembly arms these dont really have to be hands , but they need to be able to A) construct replicants B) gather materials into the belly ..
social software will be networked parrallelized memory and visual recognition so they basicaly become a group mind when there cpu is idle (eg when there charging aka sleeping :) .
i guess the way these robots would evolve would be software only for the moment unless the 3d printer will have a database of possible components that get rated on there usefullness after each generation and the data that gets generated from each generation is passed on.
so for the software evolution ,, each robot once created would have the predecessors optomized routines for getting to whatever power sources it has found.
a very simple robot but needing very cool shit to get it to work ! now if i could streamline the details more..