Robotic, camera-equipped capsule boldly goes where no 'bot has gone before


If they ever make a sequel to Innerspace, its star may look a lot like Carnegie Mellon University's robotic pill (hey, Wall•E turned out all right, didn't it?). At first glance, the pill sounds pretty damn creepy: It harmlessly attaches itself to your intestinal walls and then sprouts legs and marches about, taking pictures of your inner workings. It's feet — rather than using hooks or drills or some equally abominable method — have tiny, patterned arrays at the tip of each one, so it's more like an adhesive.

Current snake-like cameras that probe our gastrointestinal highways are safe enough, but the robotic pill would give doctors far more control over where they are looking, and increase the chance that, if there's a problem to be found, they'll find it.

Reaction to the pill across the net seems pretty mixed. A lot of folks have found it creepy to think there's a tiny robot crawling around inside them. What do you think — would you swallow it?

NanoRobotics Laboratory, via Robot Living