Have you ever lain awake at night thinking, “Wow, I would just sleep so much easier if I knew that, in addition to all the drones that already exist, someone was out there adding to the genre of unmanned war apparatus by inventing a giant robotic jellyfish that could spy on people?”
Well you can rest easy tonight, because indeed, there’s a partnership between the U.S. Navy and Virginia Tech College of Engineering intent on creating such a creature/object/robot/jellyfish. In fact, they are so dedicated to this project that they have constructed a 600-gallon tank entirely for the robo-jelly. (We wonder if they are having parties in it like in our favorite scene from Real Genius?)
The “jellyfish” is made out of a metal base, kind of like a really ugly coffee table. It is then covered with a flexible silicone top, and then has all these little wires and stuff so it can move along, really jellyfish-like, so that America’s enemies just look at it and say, “Oh, look at that jellyfish!” instead of “Look at that thing that looks like a jellyfish that is spying on us right now.” Here is a video of the people making it:
The biggest problem with this “jellyfish” is that it needs to be charged every four hours or so, which is not very helpful in the realism department as no one has ever seen an actual jellyfish leave the scene of its jellyfishness to go become more jellyfish-like. But when they’re not having giant pool parties in the big tank the Navy built for them, these guys are all over it.