garrick lee (
Fri, 1 Sep 2000 19:00:38 -0700 (PDT)

--- wrote:
> The discussion about the new mech. got me thinking
> and I thought I'd share
> my thoughts. I don't mean to hurt anyone and don't
> think it will, but I
> apologize in advance if it does. These are my
> thoughts and are not directed
> at any person or person's on this list. Now, onto my
> thoughts:
> What's the point of a humanoid robot, anyway?

they put the "fiction" into science fiction. :)

> Legs
> can go over different
> types of terrain, more then an ATV or hover craft
> can go over. Basically, all
> one would need is legs, with a torso for the cockpit
> and for weapon mounts,
> arms wouldn't be needed.

personally, i think the humanoid mech is a crock of
doodoo, however nice it is to look at. the most
feasible mechs to me are the destroids and zent
battlepods of macross, because they're essentially
walking weapons platforms. the idea of designing
tons of complicated software just to enable the
humanoid machine to move like a human and mimic the
range of motion of a human body seems like a waste of

i'd think mobile armors are the way to go, not mobile
suits, if you're insisting on realism and feasibility
in gundam.

> To me, the point of having hands/claws, is to make
> the robot multi purpose,
> I.E., hold a rifle and a shield, hold a bridge up
> for repairs or during
> construction, help build a building, etc.
> Before you say something like "But we have
> equipment to do all this, like
> cranes," let me say this. There are places that
> modern building equipment
> can't go or is to risky to build at, like rugged
> mountain terrain. A
> humanoid, giant, robot could be designed for this
> purpose, a crane could be
> designed to fit in it's "Back Pack" and the robot,
> with it's arms and leg's,
> could brace itself and readjust it's limbs to keep
> the crane steady and
> secure when it's lifting materials, if the ground
> shifted any.

i think versatility is rather an utopian reason to
justify the existence of a humanoid mech.
specialization is always the key to machines. they
could build better cranes, better equipment, more
specifically designed machines.

> While I really like giant humanoid robots and
> would like to see one made,
> it's pretty impractical price wise, currently. No, I
> don't mean make one
> right now, but there's likely to be a time in the
> Future, when robot arms and
> legs for to replace lost limbs, will be common place
> and work just as good,
> if not better, then our own human limbs. Then, all
> it would take is to
> upscale the limbs.

well, in combat, i still don't figure what the
advantages of a humanoid form are over a compact form
(starfigher, jet, mobile armor). you've got lots of
extraneous parts (arms and limbs) flailing all over
the place (i.e. more parts to be shot at, accidentally
or intentionally), where speed and raw firepower are
of the essence. correct me if i'm wrong, but isn't
anime physics the only thing that's keeping these
mobile suits moving around and romping all over space
like they do?

again, glamour seems to be the only thing that excuses
the presence of humanoid mechs in sci-fi anime. and
we mech heads are all suckers for it. :)

> My point is robots like Gundam's are very complex
> and look how far Gundam
> takes place at in the Future, Yes I am quite clear
> that Gundam IS
> science-fiction and NOT science. It's unlikely, but
> possible that something
> like the Minovensky could be discovered. Just
> because something's science
> fiction now, doesn't mean it cannot become science
> fact. Going to the Moon
> used to be purely science fiction.

well, that's probably the point of the machining skins
in FTB. making the mechs look a bit more functional
and feasible (since we're all pretty clear that
minovsky particles probably don't exist...and without gundam as we know 'em).

personally, as long as the mech designs don't look
like g gundam or brain powerd or evangelion, i'm fine.

> My point is, it's pretty silly to except something
> like a giant robot
> anime, to be as realistic as possible. Yes, it
> should be believable, but if
> science-fiction was super, hard-core realistic, then
> it would so steeped in
> science fact, that there would be little room for
> fiction. Story tellers can
> and will take liberties to make their story
> interesting, especially in
> something that's science fiction.

story tellers should use plot devices and story
elements and character interaction to make their
stories interesting. not the use of artificial
devices. a fantasy saga is not interesting because
of the magical sword the hero wields, but because of
the character of the hero. same with sci-fi. it's
not the's the characters.

> Science-fiction is the realm of imagination, it's
> usually based somewhat in
> fact, but not totally. I think some people expect
> too much out of science
> fiction. Yes, there's probably science fantasy as
> well, I think Dunbine is
> science fantasy, from the little I've been able to
> find about it, in English.
>'re right. some people do take sci-fi too
seriously. but i think sci-fi shouldn't be too hokey
lest it be nothing but baloney, y'know what i mean?

dunbine...i couldn't care less about it (i'm bitter
that bandai decided to do master grade dunbine, but
not valkyries...*mutters obscenities*)

> Aaron


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