we’re posting this story around bedtime for many of our
readers, we must warn you that you might carefully consider whether you
want to watch this video of a 35-foot robot snake.
monstrous electro-mechanical beast named Titanoboa
weighs more than a ton, and its makers plan to eventually cover it with
what they call “a more polished-looking skin, and if all goes
well, [it will] be able to move underwater.”
wrote on the snake’s
The Titanoboa project is an
exercise in alternative forms of propulsion and power applications in
transport. The purpose is to showcase this experiment by harnessing and
enlarging the mesmerizing movement of the snake. The huge serpent has
undeniable appeal as a surreal mechanical beast that moves in a
seemingly magical way over land and will glide stealthily through the
water. One or more participants will eventually interact with the piece
by riding it or for the more ambitious, driving it. The complex control
needed to properly move hundreds of individual parts will necessitate a
skilled operator who has taken time to become at one with the serpent.
not even the half of it. In the opposing corner is another metal beast
they built, the Mondo
Spider, an eight-legged
contraption powerful enough to transport a person from one place to
another with enough clanking and foot-clapping noises to wake the dead.
The world’s first walking electric vehicle, it weighs 1,700
pounds and was originally unveiled at Burning
Man 2006. Together, the two
robots create an atmosphere that’s beyond bizarre.
not exactly fighting each other in this video, but the peculiar sounds
each one makes and the slithering metallic serpent’s
deliberate manner is the stuff of nightmares. We’re told this
35-foot version is a mere prototype of the final snake, which will be
built to its 50-foot final length by sometime next year.
brings it to the same size as the prehistoric snake Titanoboa
it’s named after, a behemoth whose fossilized remains are
those of the largest snake ever discovered. Crawling around the jungles
of South America around 60 million years ago, the height of its body
was as tall as a standing human.
are these brilliant robot builders? It’s the Mondo Crew, part
of Vancouver, British Columbia — a group of artists,
designers and builders who say they “make audacious and
improbable large-scale kinetic, robotic, and mechanized sculptures that
investigate our human relationship to energy use.” We think
they put together these mechanical conveyances just for the fun of it.
another video of the snake in action: