back to article Sperm-derived power system for nanobots patented

Cybernetics designers have long tended to copy successful anatomical features from living creatures. Now nano-robotics boffins are getting in on the act, seeking to make use of the process which drives sperm. Apparently your regular sperm makes use of a process called "glycolysis" to generate energy with which to swim …


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  1. This post has been deleted by a moderator

  2. Bad Beaver
    Paris Hilton


    Now why would glycolysis need quotation marks? "Apparently" we teach our kids about it in school. It's not like it was "evolution" or some such strange wizardry... *g*

    I think it is obvious why I chose the Paris icon.

  3. Arbuthnot Bullwinkle

    Viz was ahead of the time

    Surely this just goes to show how far ahead of the time Viz was when they ran the strip on Micky's Monkey Spunk Moped ?

  4. Mr Larrington

    They've been reading "Viz"

  5. oxo

    I'm going to be out of pocket :(

    Presumably this means every time my little chaps go on their merry egg fertilisation hunt, I'll have to pay a license fee to Cornell Uni?

  6. Graham Dawson Silver badge


    Only if they have a microchip installed.

    Captain Cyborg presumably is already in licensing talks.

  7. Anonymous Coward

    Recharging one's batteries

    That puts a whole new spin on that line, doesn't it?

  8. peter

    Just wait

    Till the headless monkey bots hear about this.

  9. Matt MArtin

    I wouldn't want to

    examine the prior art.

  10. Alistair
    Thumb Down

    Some mistake surely?

    Its not "glycolysis" that propels my sperm long distances at high speed!

  11. David Urmston

    Reg job offers

    Staff required at new UK spunk manufacturing plant.

    Only tossers need apply.

    Must have own driving license.

  12. Fred


    what will they think of next...

  13. Thomas Cox

    Can anyone say "The Borg"

    Whatever happened to thinking before leaping? Engineers nowadays, high from too much stimulous to the senses from the plethora of audio/visual input available, are not thinking thouroghly about the consequenses of the technologies they develop, so called "RUNAWAY TECHNOLOGY" where technology and innovation are driven by the desire to attain more pleasure and stimulous in the form of instant gratification provided by technological innovations.

    Targeting cells? Maybe useful. But they better ensure these little nanites cannot be compromised and create something more visious like a BORG race. A BORG race? Most laugh, but think about the eventual horizon this will take us.. Ask the question, "To what end?".

    Some things are better left to the imagination and not reality.

  14. Brian


    It's just too damned easy. I mean cum on.....

    But i do wonder if this would promote alt. energy production for off-grid systems applicable to homesteading.

    Mind you, I am all for off-grid power for homes....but that is a lot of kinetic energy expended....and I would lose interest after the first six or seven hours.

    And if your battery runs down in your laptop or run the risk of an indecent exposure charge if in public.

    It's thoughts like this that perpetually guarantee coal every year for Christmas for me...and odd looks from my wife and her family.

  15. Anonymous Coward

    Nanobots are too far ahead...

    There are excellent potential applications for the glycolysis based power process without bothering to build nanobots. Imagine a cell-phone charging implant. Just plug your phone into your hip jack for perpetual text-message readiness, while burning off your last bucket of KFC. I smell a new Boost mobile campaign in the US. I can't speak for the incidence of obesity amongst chavs across the pond, but the possibilities are endless...

    Even better, if the implant were positioned correctly you could kill two birds with one stone and provide free birth control by - ironically enough - overheating the sperm with waste heat. All but the lowest pants wearers would probably want the output jack positioned a little higher via an internal wire!

  16. b shubin

    Nature's wonders

    the boffins who are trying for the patent, should be required to follow each sample of "prior art" during production, and then to examine each sample in detail, for however many sample contributors decide to show up to challenge this patent.

    i feel certain that they'd quickly decide that trying to patent a widespread and established natural process is beating a...well, you know.

    this is especially true for a process they haven't completely figured out yet. perhaps they should be given a "patent in principle", which would provide absolutely no protection, but give everyone else easy access to their work, and if someone else patents the process (and all of its details) in its entirety, before they do, then the "patent in principle" becomes void. this should discourage other greedy tossers from trying to patent things they don't really understand.

    i eagerly await the first patent on the stars (luminous stellar bodies distantly seen through the atmosphere), a la "The Little Prince"; this patent will instantly be granted, because no one else had the gall to apply for such a thing before. prior art (literally art, this time) by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry will, of course, be discarded as irrelevant.

    it seems practical at this point to take the entire USPTO out to a testing facility, run repeated IQ tests on all persons working on patents or setting policy, and fire anyone who scores under 105 intellectual IQ. when that is done, run repeated psychological tests and interviews, to establish who among the remaining persons actually cares enough to do a decent job, then fire everyone else. lastly, give all remaining persons a salary of $100k or above, with the firm promise of regular raises, and tell them that they will be subject to monthly ethics and quality oversight. most who stay, will be worth keeping.

    this process should also make the USPTO much harder to corrupt and mislead.

    i "spit" in their general direction (USPTO and the research tossers, both).

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