October 19, 2007

Robocop predicts the future

Posted at October 19, 2007 11:43 AM

I've been blogging for a while now about how these mad scientists need to take a break and watch Robocop, paying especially close attention to when the ED 209 loses control and kills an innocent civilian during a demonstration.

And now it seems Robocop, in its infinite wisdom, as come true. An Oerlikon GDF-005 cannon went wildly out of control during live fire test exercises in South Africa, killing 9 people and wounding 14 more.

from wired.com Robot Cannon Kills 9, Wounds 14

SA National Defence Force spokesman brigadier general Kwena Mangope says the cause of the malfunction is not yet known...

Media reports say the shooting exercise, using live ammunition, took place at the SA Army's Combat Training Centre, at Lohatlha, in the Northern Cape, as part of an annual force preparation endeavour.

Mangope told The Star that it “is assumed that there was a mechanical problem, which led to the accident. The gun, which was fully loaded, did not fire as it normally should have," he said. "It appears as though the gun, which is computerised, jammed before there was some sort of explosion, and then it opened fire uncontrollably, killing and injuring the soldiers." [More details here -- ed.]

Other reports have suggested a computer error might have been to blame. Defence pundit Helmoed-Römer Heitman told the Weekend Argus that if “the cause lay in computer error, the reason for the tragedy might never be found."



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