Achilles Robotics

In 2.2 there are a whole bunch of new "ads", Alliance ones, Federation ones, ship manufacturers, all the usual stuff, what you'd expect really.

Except this one, which stands out...

Achilles Robotics? I thought AI was outlawed? (though I now can't seem to find a source for this)

The ad is visible in all faction stations so not tied to a power.

Are these just dumb automatons? Do they sit in the seats of ship launched fighters for the neural link? Something more? Are they Androids? I have no idea!

There's this news article from the old Frontier First Encounters journals that mention Achilles, it would be dated somewhere around the year 3200 :


Research workers at the [SyR(I) Scientific station have published details of their recent andro-human fertility project. The work, funded by the Giga-Tronics Corporation was established over fifty years ago in an effort to bridge the gap between human and android. The belief that androids are necessarily sterile has been fundamental to the understanding of the differences between human and android and was indeed, the cornerstone of the great legal debate of the last century: Jorvak vs. Trojan Developments Inc.

The final judgement centred on the fact that the andro/human in question: Tomas Jorvak, was capable of reproduction and indeed had fifteen very human children. The two dozen judges involved decided that Jorvak could therefore not be classed as android in nature. This was sufficient to win his case against the Trojan Developments Inc. Customer Services Department for inadequate repair of certain body parts, and he was awarded significant damages, including legal costs. Trojan Developments Inc. went into liquidation as a direct result of the financial drain on resources.

The firm of lawyers acting on Jorvak's behalf set up the Achilles Corporation on the proceeds of the case, hired most of the technicians and robotics engineers from the extinct Trojan Developments Inc. and became known system-wide as the biggest sharks in the business. Jorvak himself set up the Giga-Tronics Corporation and devoted the next four hundred years of his life to proving that human-android reproduction was, in fact, possible. It seems likely from reading his diaries, published posthumously, that he considered himself to be wholly android and that although the legal case made him extraordinarily rich, he was unhappy with the apparent stigma of a human identity.

The recent paper has not set out full details of the project but it is apparent that at least one fully formed andro-human child has been produce. The exact characteristics of either parents or offspring have yet to be published and it is likely to be some time before the full details are known.

The Imperial High Command have expressed an interest in the project and are known to have offered significant sums of money for the full details but have so far not been accepted by the executors of Jorvak's estate. Although he did not live to see his life plan come to fruition, it is certain that Tomas Jorvak, android and human, would be happy with the outcome.
I have no idea if this is still cannon, but could this is Tomas Jorvak himself, the non-android?

Could Achilles Robotics be the "shark" company mentioned above, perhaps Tomas' is just being used on the advert imagery and that this company does not actually manufacture Androids.

Perhaps the above Android is indeed a legit AI, it's just it predates it being outlawed.
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There are mentions of a few Android from the Journals

Some suggest the term Android is used for Cyborgs

For about the past ten centuries or so, expectant parents have seldom needed to wait until the moment of birth to discover the sex of their child. Modern medical science has advanced to the point that even when the child has been conceived naturally, it is possible to determine accurately after as little as eight weeks, not merely the sex of the child but also skin, hair and eye colour, susceptibility to genetic diseases, and even its earned point average during its first year at university, probable career choice and likely starting salary. Nevertheless, scientists at [PlL1(C) yesterday celebrated a first with the successful birth of the first human infant to undergo in utero Implantation of synthetic components. The infant, born to a trio of asteroid miners, was conceived without proper medical supervision, and ran the risk of being born with a rare congenital heart defect.
Doctors at the University Medical Hospital in [CiL1(C) opted to try a novel nanosurgery technique to install replacement synthetic heart valves in the growing fetus. The technique had been practiced on simulacra, but had never been tried with a human patient before.
The birth was uneventful, and mother and child are both doing well.

Others suggest they are Synthetics created, and certainly AI

And there is a Android Alliance for looking out for Android rights
And they can be full citizens, even in the Empire

"We will only succeed if every single Imperial Citizen, human and android, gives of their all in this time of crisis. Thank you.'"

"Imperial citizens have flocked in their millions to the Central Volunteer Bureaux ordained by His Excellency to enable His subjects to aid their Empire in its hour of need. Day and night people of all genetic arrangement, freeholders and slaves, organics and androids have been lining up outside the Centres"

Android are referred to separately from Humans and Android %, and Demi Androids is referred to

"Both Federal and Imperial viriods engineered to kill on the basis of age, gender, android percentage, height, weight and poetic tendencies are therefore illegal and the use of pre-dosed vaccines is negated. An updated list of all banned agents is available from the central committee of the local People's Co-operative."

"Popular Representative J Biggs of Reagan's Legacy (Delta Pavonis) is facing yet more questions following allegations from leading aides that the PR was involved in the widespread smuggling of Riedquatian mousemat coats throughout the system and surrounding sector.
The PR, a charismatic demi-android with "

Yet this entry suggest they are Silicon based AI Life

A recent survey conducted by members of the Unaffiliated Research Syndicate was conducted amongst systems in the Inner Core to determine the sleep/Dream patterns of the majority of the human and andro-human population. It is axiomatic that Androids have no need for sleep, no psychic need to dream and no observable states in any way analogous to those states in humans. In fact, one of the earliest defining features used to distinguish between silicon and carbon-based self-aware beings is that the silicon based, technologically created, being does not have the need to dream - the dreaming function ( if there is a function) evolved in parallel with the ability to be self aware.
Self-programming silicon functions on an intellectual level at several orders of magnitude greater efficiency than does the carbon-based equivalent and the learning curve is spectacularly steeper. Learning to full capacity takes less than one cycle from initiation in the Android while there is ample evidence that the vast majority of humans never attain their full intellectual capacity at any point in their life cycle.
The dream/no dream distinction was used by the Committee of Differentiation in the early years of the third millennium during the series of organo-mechanic Conflicts. As the boundaries between human and andro-human became progressively less distinct, the parochialism of either camp increased to the point where to accuse a human of having android characteristics or vice versa was tantamount to suicide. The andro-humans caught in the middle were loathed by both sides.
We follow in our next issue with an examination of the question: Is there a need to dream?
Following our last issue concerning dream work, we ask the question that contains the key to dreaming.
Is there a real need to dream? Is it a useful to differentiate between android and human ( organo-mechanical divisions) and is the need to dream linked to mental ability? Then - how does the use of manufactured dreams alter our perceptions of reality?
We sent them to find out how much our lives are really run by the Dreamware we absorb in such vast quantities. Do we change our lives, our beliefs, our patterns of behaviour or our therapists under the influence of dreams created for us in the multi-media warehouses of Zemien?
Over a period of three Cycles, our reporters talked to a total of five thousand individuals, androids as well as human and filed reports with our central processing department.
Of the three thousand humans questioned over two thirds admitted on first questioning that they had based their early relationships on those modelled by the Dreamware archetypes. All were adamant that their belief structures were moulded by the dreams and that the official tuition available in inter-personal relationship was not considered to be either accurate or relevant to their own lives. Adult humans of all age groups were equally affected, the only differences were in the nature of the archetypes fashionable at the time and hence the direct affects demonstrated.
In this, the conclusion of our Dream report, we present the definitive resume on the topic of dreaming.
Research has demonstrated that the requirement for archetypes are cyclical, the two opposing polarities being exemplified by the Archaic Greek myths and legends and the Late Industrial Era, both of Earth.
Beyond that, pseudo-historical re-creations of the Lost Race of Achenar were popular amongst the Federal Systems, particularly those near the core where the degree of indoctrination correlates exactly with the popularity of this type of Dreamware. It is alleged that in Federal Systems, the teaching Committees use pre-cognitive conditioning to encourage the developing youngsters to adhere to the trend. Naturally, RIG does not subscribe to this belief.
In Imperial Systems where Achenarian mythology is banned, the replacement sub-belief is that of the heroic formation of the Empire with full deification of the Duval dynasty, or at least the scions of it that succeeded the eponymous founder.
In Systems owned by Corporations, the dictating factor tends to be financial and the trends follow strictly commercial lines. The recent stunning success of the Dream-Lightning Syndicate was largely due to the incredible marketing strategy of the Cygni who broadcast the first episode of a sixteen part saga FREE on every dream-waveband. The starting cost would, apparently, have paid for the re-population of a couple of small planets but the returns were said to be 'substantial' and moved the DLS into the forefront of the Dreamware industry.
The most striking finding of the survey was the attitude of non-organics to the dreaming needs of the human population. The failure of dreaming in androids and mechano-humans with significant cerebral transplants was attributed to the silicon based nature of the synapses.
Researchers at the University of the Fifth Age on Mars (Sol) are working flat out on an exciting new breakthrough in the understanding of the organic/silicon distinction. Recent advances in the development of neural interfaces in organ-androids may, for the first time, have created the dreaming facility in non-organics.
The scientists are playing their cards pretty close to their chests but leaked information from a reliable source suggests that several of the research subjects are not only finding the need to sleep but are reporting dream-like experiences.
To date, only those of natural human extraction or with primate cerebral transplants have demonstrated these faculties and dreaming has been the primary distinguishing feature enabling the fine line between organic and silicon intelligence to be maintained.
A breakdown in this line would radically change the social and cultural basis of our entire culture.

This disturbing story

through the long slow twilight.
Maybe you'll notice this hasn't got any names in it. Well, there's a reason. The ultimate hunt for me is an illegal prey, illegal except on this one planet where they've outlawed inorganics and any that show are given one day to get out of town or face the consequences. You'd be surprised how often the droids decide to take the risk. They get kitted out and head for the hills with every hunter on the planet baying for their... well, you can't say blood can you? Oil maybe, that golden ichor they use instead of the red stuff.
I got my droid after it had killed ten men, ten experienced hunters with notches on their blasters. I'd holed up in a cave with a seep of smoke drifting downwind. I knew he'd smell me out. Two days it took him and I was nodding over my gun. He was unarmed I knew, damaged by the last man who'd died under his fists. A falling stone alerted me too late.
Desperately I tried to raise my gun but his hand struck like a snake. He tore my gun out of my hand and he turned my own weapon onto me. Without a pause he flicked off the safety and fired.
OK, so it was a sneak trick, but you can't take chances with a 'droid. It's the kill that counts. The bullet exploded out the back of the gun and blew his glass head to shards. Droids. They're fast, they're mean. They know what it's going to be like and they keep coming in.
Me, I think they enjoy the game. Maybe they just can't figure out any other way to die.
They're the ultimate hunt.

and the Personals

ETERNALLY OPTIMISTIC gorgeous and well-built ANDROID seeks similar for mutual fun amidst the palm fields of Canarbe. Federalists only. No anarchists or eugenicists.

WITTY UNPRETENTIOUS staggeringly bright ANDROID with an IQ that would fill your data banks seeks PARTNER to fill that Void together. Send me a read-out of your cerebral statistics and we could be joined in the mind by tonight.

EXCELLENT OPPORTUNITY with unlimited potential for life-time's reward. ANDROID with re-renewed life-span circuits looking for new-ish offering with a zest for exploring life. Interest in didactic exchange an advantage.

STAR-DANCING ANDROID seeks co-enchantment with fresh, newly serviced, Theta model to share the Galactic magic.

ANDROID/HUMAN/BOTH? If you can't tell the difference either, we need each other. Join me at the start of a new life on voyage to the colony of Demerit where the organic-mechanic dialogue is seen as the meaningless trivia it has always been.

ANDROID seeks same. Epsilon model 2 20 1: 90 from Edge Wars on Andceeth, many recent upgrades, seeks compatible model for friendship and maybe more. No hemi-organics.
There is still some mention of regulation of AI in the game. This from the description of Xihe Biomorphic Companions:
We make the most realistic and exclusive animal companions using the latest technology and robotics, better than nature and guaranteed to last. Rigorous testing ensures that all our animals conform to the appropriate legislation on artificial intelligence.
This concept art might be relevant :)


It's by one of the Elite: Dangerous concept artists from a long time ago.

It's posted on his deviantart page:

Notice in the discussion underneath, he talks about it a bit...

"Really interesting. Looks like some sort of service bot perhaps? I can imagine it walking around the landingpad"

"Yeah the chap is fairly all purpose, can carry cargo etc, he's meant for fairly low gravity of the inner drum so probably 1/10th G."

I'm hoping one day we'll see these little guys in stations :)

Regarding AI... I don't think it has a proper full on sentient AI - it's more a sort of automated loader for docking bays.
I spotted that advert too. I am very excited about it, because it gives hints about what the ED universe might be like.

Achilles Robotics? I thought AI was outlawed?
Robotics and AI are not synonymous.
We have robots today. But nothing that would qualify as AI.

I guess in the ED universe we will have Robots that that are very mobile, quite humanoid in appearance and that can be programmed to do certain tasks very well, but have no true AI to speak off.

Things like that can be regulated. There will be laws and perhaps there are special policing units to enforce them.

I think this creates incredible opportunities for game play.
Some corporations might try to circumvent the law, or they might have a secret lab in some asteroid belt where they experiment with AI in secrecy.
A robot with AI might escape. Bounty hunters might get hired to disable the AI and bring back its artificail brain. etc.etc.
I would love to be like some ED version of a Bladerunner.
FD would be very smart to add this type of gameplay to the ED universe.
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Is anyone else irritated that they threw out the definition of android because they got tired of explaining what it is?
"So it's a robot that looks human?"
*sigh*"Sure. Whatever."

Look it up on wikipedia and you can't even find the real definition. Artificial human. Not a robot. Not a genetically engineered test tube baby. Wholly fabricated genetics built from scratch and programmed to completely resemble a human, inside and out. A gynoid built on the same programming language would be able to concieve. The ability to breed is a prerequisite for, not a phenomenon of, being an android.
But pop culture wins again. What can you expect with a culture that has a thing called "organic vegetables". As opposed to what, silicon based vegetables? Untreated vegetables makes sense whereas organic is a buzz word that means nothing. A society where we take something out of the freezer to de-thaw it instead of thaw it. Where people keep saying "actually", trying to be polite, as if it isn't condescending.

Data is a humanoid automaton with a consciousness. A robot that builds robots isn't an android, how human it looks doesn't make a difference. That's not to say an android wouldn't build robots in his spare time.

Here it has some definite relevancy as to where the law stands on transhuman hyperintelligence in regards to AI.
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Look it up on wikipedia and you can't even find the real definition. Artificial human. Not a robot. Not a genetically engineered test tube baby. Wholly fabricated genetics built from scratch and programmed to completely resemble a human, inside and out. A gynoid built on the same programming language would be able to concieve. The ability to breed is a prerequisite for, not a phenomenon of, being an android.
Don't know where you get your definition of android, but it's not correct. There is no requirement for an android to procreate, or have genetics, or even be organically based. Data, from SNG, is indeed an android.
I suspect you are thinking that the replicants from bladerunner are androids, which they aren't.
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