Robotic ball that chases burglars

A large black ball, originally designed by Swedish scientists for use on Mars, could be the latest weapon in the war against burglars.

The device, developed at the University of Uppsala, acts as a high-tech security guard capable of detecting an intruder thanks to either radar or infra-red sensors. Once alerted, it can summon help, sound an alarm or pursue the intruders, taking pictures.

It is capable of travelling at 20mph, somewhat faster than a human being. Even worse for intruders, the robot ball can still give chase over mud, snow and water.

The ball relies on an internal pendulum to control its motion which, when shifted, changes the centre of gravity and starts it rolling.

Other devices, including microphones, cameras, heat sensors and smoke detectors are mounted on its central axis.

Nils Hulth, co-founder of Rotundus, the company which is marketing the ball, said it was especially well-suited to patrolling perimeter fences.

The prototype, just under 2ft in diameter, weighs about 10lb. "It is extremely light, which is why it moves so fast," Mr Hulth said.

While the current version can only raise the alarm, it could be adapted to corner an intruder if the customer wanted, Mr Hulth added.

Patrick Mercer, the Tory MP who is campaigning to give people greater rights to defend their property against burglars, thought the robot ball could have potential: "It would be interesting to see whether the ball had used grossly disproportionate force or whether it would be deemed reasonable.

"But I would much rather a burglar be terrified of householders and shopkeepers, rather than some sort of futuristic device."
We really are entering the age where robots will rule the world! 8O

As seen in the sixties TV series 'The Prisoner':

The ball ('rover') was launched whenever an inmate tried to escape from The Village. It was capable of travelling over any surface, though the actual method of capturing escapees was never shown.

Will it come equiped with a Tulzla? device, 50,000 volts right up the jacksy, that'll sort the fcukers out

Im sure that Rover would cover and suffocate the escapee until he/she was rendered unconcious.

I can still picture Patrick McGowans face covered in thin plastic.

Spooky indeed.

Speaking of the prisoner, has anyone seen the simpsons parody of that show. Very funny. They all get transported to a mysterious island and everytime homer tries to escape he gets chase by a ball and drugged into submission


As Mr. X Homer starts his own web page where begins revealing Springfield's secrets. He ultimately wins the Pulitzer Prize for his work so he reveals himself to the public. When everyone knows that he is Mr. X his ability to obtain secrets disappears. So he begins making up stories. When one of those stories turns out to be the truth, he is kidnapped and taken to "The Island," a place where those who know too much are taken out of society.

Guest Stars: Patrick McGoohan (as Voice of Number 6) Marcia Wallace (as Voice of Edna Krabappel) Karl Wiedergott (as Voice of Various) Pamela Hayden (as Voice of Rod Flanders) Tress MacNeille (as Voice of Various)


WHOEVER SAID THIS: "Why did you think a balloon would stop them?"
WHOEVER SAID THIS: "Shut up, thats why."

Homer: Save me, Mr. X! Oh, wait, I'm Mr. X.

Homer: Oh, yeah, perfect. Now, then... (talks into mouse) Computer, kill Flanders.
Flanders: Did I hear my name? My ears are burning.
Homer: (whispers to computer) Good start. Now finish the job.
Flanders: Oh, you're busy. Catch you later, computator.
Homer: Oh, $5,000 for a computer and it can't handle a simple assignment.

Lenny: According to my uncle, Miss Springfield isn't as beautiful as she seems. Word is she uses appearance-altering cosmetics.
Moe: Oh my God, that's shocking.
Carl: The public should be warned. I wish Mr. "X" was here.
Homer: (slyly) Oh, I don't know, Carl, he might be closer than you think.
Carl: Are you him? Are you Mr. "X"?
Homer: No.
Carl: But you talked in the real sly voice. Hey, hey, everybody! Homer's Mr. "X".
Homer: I am not! (slyly) ...or am I?
Lenny: Are you?
Homer: No.

Computer Clancy Wiggum ((after Homer clicks NO)): You have chosen "NO", meaning you HAVE committed a crime, but don't want to admit it. A paddywagon should be arriving at your house within minutes.
**a paddywagon appears in the lower right corner of the screen**

Comic Book Guy: There is no emoticon for what i'm feeling.

Homer: If there's a better use for the Internet, I haven't found it.

Skinner's mom: Seymour, are you looking at naked ladies?
Skinner: No mother.
Skinner's mom: You sissy!

Marge (suspicious of a German-accented operative masquerading as Homer): There's something different about you.
Operative: Ja... I am a new tie vearink.

Number 6: Number 27 knows how to turn water into gasoline. Number 12 knows the deadly secret behind Tic-tacs.

Quimby (after the press found his swimming pool)- Good lord! we've dicovered the ruins of Atlantis.
*they just look at him* you try and do better

(Bart is thumbing through a comic book at the Kwik-E-Mart when a bound-and-gagged Apu finally gets his attention. He rushes over and removes the duct tape from Apu's mouth.)
Apu: (Gasping for air) This is not a library!!

Moleman: So hungry

Cultural References

Homer: I am not a number, I am a man! Oh wait.

As someone's already said, the second half of the episode is a parody of "The Prisoner". The line Homer used is almost the same basic line that Number 6 used in the first episode. Homer's double was taken from the episode "The Schizoid man" and Homer's escape was like "Many Happy Returns". Also, the constant druggings are a joke on how Number 6 was drugged almost every episode. More Info

When Homer is on his raft escaping, and the 2 people are watching him on the huge screen, it parodies Jim Carrey escaping on his boat while Ed Harris was watching him on a huge monitor in the 1998 film "The Truman Show."
The Island-Koala always seems to turn up wearing Dame Edna Everage glasses, in its little moments of unexplained idiocy.
Anyway, back onto subject. :D
'The Ruum', by Arthur Porges, was first published in The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction in 1953.

An alien starship is forced to abandon a device on Earth. Much later, a solo hunter in the Canadian Rockies comes across something strange -

'It was like some enterprising giant's outdoor butcher shop: a great assortment of animal bodies , neatly lined up in a triple row ... those nearest him were ordinary deer, bear, cougars and mountain sheep ... but down the line were strange, uncouth, half-formed hairy beasts ...

[no deliberate reference to the Royal Marines intended here, I believe]

... beyond them a nightmare conglomeration of reptiles.

... for a second it seemed that a half-filled leather sack of mercury had rolled into the clearing. For the quasi-spherical object moved with just such a fluid motion. But it was not leather; and what at first appeared a disgusting wartiness, turned out on closer scrutiny to be more like the functional projections of some outlandish mechanism ... it rolled towards him at a speed of about five miles an hour. And from its purposeful advance, the man had no doubt that it meant to add him to the pathetic heap of specimens.'

Now, trust me on this - you would not want to go anywhere near this gadget, as the rest of the story makes even morer abundantly clear.
I remember that television series. It acquired a cult following over here.

It showed:

** a prison camp artfully disguised as a resort community,

** presided over by a sham-benevolent tyranny whose dearest wish was to make sure that no one had a private thought in their heads, and

** controlled people by means of inescapable electronic surveillance, idiotic slogans and incessant propaganda.

Obviously just a load of rubbish. I mean, nothing like that could ever happen in real life.
whatever could you mean? :D

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