National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) stating that they used computer “algorithms” to design a new kind of life form, the first living robot, also known as a “Xenobot“.
The paper shows that this sub-millimeter-sized “xeno-robot” usually contains 500 to 1,000 cells and can move quickly in a culture dish, form its own organization, and even transport tiny loads. The cells that make up the “xenobot” are derived from the skin and heart muscle of Xenopus laevis.
The tiny robots move quite slowly, scientists say, so to verify that they were actually doing what they were designed to do, the researchers flipped them onto their backs, which stopped the robots in their tracks, like a turtle being flipped on its back. Turn over and lie on the turtle shell.
These living robots have self-healing capabilities. “We cut the robot in half, and it sews itself back together and keeps going,” said Josh Bongard, a computer scientist involved in the research.
Biological cells are stripped off, assembled according to the “evolutionary algorithm” of computer simulation, and then a new species is created in the laboratory – the “forbidden zone” that humans have never set foot in in history has finally been officially broken.
Michael Levin, director of the Allen Discovery Center who participated in the project research, believes: “These are completely new life forms that have never existed on Earth. They are living organisms that can be designed.” ”
Science media Science Alert commented that if allowed to develop naturally, these skin and heart stem cells extracted from embryonic frogs will become skin and heart tissue in breathing animals. In experiments designed by algorithms and built by humans, the cells were assembled into the first-ever living robots.
Scientists are confident in the application prospects of “exotic robots”. They believe that most of the technologies currently created by humans are made of materials that are difficult to process, such as steel, concrete, chemicals and plastics, which will subsequently cause ecological and health side effects, while cell-derived organisms themselves can provide ideal Material.