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Sperm Could Power Nanobots

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 6 years ago | from the make-sure-you-pick-the-best-swimmers dept.

259

Lucas123 writes "According to MSNBC, scientists are experimenting with using a sperm's flagellum to overcome the problem of supplying energy to nanobots that could be implanted in the body as smart probes that would release disease-fighting drugs, monitor enzymes and perform other medical roles within a patient's body. Powered by a compound called adenosine triphosphate or ATP, a sperm's flagellum can propel it at about 7 inches an hour. Energy from ATP could also power the pumps charged with dispensing the medication at a certain rate from the nanobots."

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259 comments

Think of the possibilities... (5, Funny)

DragonPup (302885) | more than 6 years ago | (#21885728)

...of making your insurance provider to cover your porn costs so you can power your nanobots!

Powering Fembots (Movie with Tilda Swinton?) (3, Insightful)

StCredZero (169093) | more than 6 years ago | (#21885926)

How about sperm powered fembots? They could remake this movie!

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0270688/plotsummary [imdb.com]

Re:Powering Fembots (Movie with Tilda Swinton?) (0, Redundant)

Pharmboy (216950) | more than 6 years ago | (#21886558)

[[insert 'refueling fembots that run on sperm' joke here]]

Its just too easy...

Ob.Futurama (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21886626)

Don't date robots!

Re:Think of the possibilities... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21886200)

ScuttleMonkey likes to have Zonk's sperm all over his face.

Sperm isn't the fuel. ATP is. (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21886504)

ATP is the fuel for muscles. Trying to use ATP to power nanobots has absolutely nothing to do with sperm in particular.

The good news (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21886530)

is your cancer is completely gone.

The bad news is you're pregnant.

That's great an all... (5, Funny)

Serenissima (1210562) | more than 6 years ago | (#21885738)

But where on Earth can they possibly find enough sperm?

Re:That's great an all... (5, Funny)

meringuoid (568297) | more than 6 years ago | (#21885828)

Sperm-powered robots on the hunt for fuel? Well, somehow I think the anime writes itself, don't you?

Re:That's great an all... (2, Funny)

andphi (899406) | more than 6 years ago | (#21885946)

If by "writes" you mean "ties bedroom scenes together with something resembling plot (in the same way that the heroine of the story wears something resembling clothing)", then yes, it does write itself. But I wouldn't want to be caught dead in the same room with the DVD of it.

Re:That's great an all... (5, Funny)

Serenissima (1210562) | more than 6 years ago | (#21885982)

Well, naturally, you'd want to be caught alive in the same room! Having someone find your dead body in a room with that playing on the DVD player would raise some interesting questions... Like "What was he doing so furiously that his heart stopped?"

Re:That's great an all... (4, Funny)

andphi (899406) | more than 6 years ago | (#21886292)

I can see it now. Gil Grissom and that Assistant ME David are looking down at my corpse. Gil looks at the box, unopened, and the DVD player, which isn't turned on. Gil says: "Well, this is new." David says: "Preliminary cause of death: exsanguination from these explosive contusions on the face, neck, and chest. No other signs of trauma." That new chick who replaced Sara: "This is so weird. What's your theory, Grissom?" Gil: "I don't have theories, just evidence." and then, in voice over: "Go away, new chick, and don't come back without Sara. I want my Sara back you dumb, overly perky evidence-bunny."

Nick discovers that I didn't order the DVD and don't even own a PAL compatible DVD player. Greg comments on the eclectic but basically porn-free movie collection. "Lots of anime, sci-fi, and fantasy, but no pr0n, unless Ghost in the Shell is pr0n." Greg then tells an unrelated story about being severely embarassed. Nick speculates on the incidence of murder by pr0n and Greg goes off on another Las Vegas underworld history lesson.

Later, Hodges, in another fit of self-importance, concludes: "He died of embarassment." Gil looks at him with that signature "Thank you, Hodges, for telling me what we already knew" look on his face and then, in voice over: "Go away Hodges, and don't come back, ever. I want Lab Greg back, even if it means having to deal with two Gregs"

Re:That's great an all... (1)

SP33doh (930735) | more than 6 years ago | (#21886412)

you'd be surprised how decent character development can be in (some) hentai.

Re:That's great an all... (5, Funny)

andphi (899406) | more than 6 years ago | (#21886464)

I probably would be. However, this premise doesn't seem to lend itself to that kind of hentai.

Already exists... (4, Funny)

SanityInAnarchy (655584) | more than 6 years ago | (#21886150)

The plot didn't involve nanotech directly, but it did have quotes like "I need your active molecules! Please, deposit them in the front slot!"

Ahem... or so I'm told.

Re:That's great an all... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21886178)

anime hell. We just got the plot for the fourth Matrix movie.

Re:That's great an all... (5, Funny)

badran (973386) | more than 6 years ago | (#21885832)

Well Most people here suddenly find them selves a tad more useful to the world...

Are you kidding? (0, Redundant)

jamrock (863246) | more than 6 years ago | (#21886076)

But where on Earth can they possibly find enough sperm?
Umm....Slashdot posters maybe? This forum gives new meaning to the phrase "the gray goo problem".

Bionic Sperm (1)

jcaldwel (935913) | more than 6 years ago | (#21885752)

A sperm barely alive. Gentlemen, we can rebuild him. We have the technology. We have the capability to build the world's first bionic sperm. Steve Austin will be that sperm. Better than he was before. Better, stronger, faster.

Sperm life? (2, Interesting)

Turn-X Alphonse (789240) | more than 6 years ago | (#21885762)

How long would sperm be able to live though? I believe it's about 3 days in an ideal environment (vagina), how would it work in a hostile one like a nanobot?

Re:Sperm life? (4, Informative)

pembo13 (770295) | more than 6 years ago | (#21885792)

I could be wrong, but the vagina is a hostile environment to sperm -- it produces natural spermicides.

Re:Sperm life? (1)

Turn-X Alphonse (789240) | more than 6 years ago | (#21885928)

Some vaginas are too acidic and hence hostile, but in general they aren't hostile to it, other wise pregnancy would be extremely difficult.

Re:Sperm life? (4, Informative)

Bryansix (761547) | more than 6 years ago | (#21885964)

No, they are all hostile. That is why sperm gels up in the seminal fluid shortly after release and then springs into black-ops when the coast is clear to enter the cervix.

Re:Sperm life? (3, Funny)

Albert Sandberg (315235) | more than 6 years ago | (#21886096)

.. now this thread is something I thought would never appear on slashdot. And modded informative/insightful all over the place? Hell just froze ;)

Re:Sperm life? (5, Funny)

maroberts (15852) | more than 6 years ago | (#21886210)

Slashdot readers know all about the scientific details of sex. They just haven't experienced it personally (at least not with a member of the opposite sex).

Re:Sperm life? (1)

nanter (613346) | more than 6 years ago | (#21886306)

Not to mention that semen is very alkaline, for that very reason. The alkalinity is designed to counteract the acidity of the vagina and reduce the hostility of the environment for the sperm.

It is also interesting to note that it is the alkalinity of the semen that often gives girls that fishy smell. In an acidic environment, trimethylamine, which is the compound that smells like fish, is not volatile. When the pH rises, however, the TMA volatilizes and is released into the air to be smelled by all whose noses are near - thus a fishy smell.

Re:Sperm life? (1)

davidsyes (765062) | more than 6 years ago | (#21886326)

This para sounds like "armed cervixes". Counter insurgency springs to mind.

Also, when I was new to "The Nav", one of the first things I heard (and thought was, umm, "nuts", as in crazy) was:

"Hey, who's the Duty Cum Pumper?" That was a title for the "'girl'/male whore" on duty, the one who (jokingly) would suck off whoever else was on duty." (My first ship (that ship) was all-male crewed.)

Sailors say the darndest things...

Re:Sperm life? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21886062)

Isn't that when the mother in law is the interior designer of their new home?

Re:Sperm life? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21885814)

Ohhhh boy, you just had to go there, didn't you?

In before robot sex/Real Doll jokes.

Re:Sperm life? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21885980)

A vagina is NOT an ideal environment for sperm, quite the contrary! Vagina's are built to exterminate all but the strongest, fittest spermatozoids. Although I do not know if an acidic stomach is a more suitable environment for the little guys ;-)

Re:Sperm life? (1)

Chas (5144) | more than 6 years ago | (#21886142)

No. Sperm will NOT live three days in the vagina. Too acidic, too hostile.

The mean lifetime of three days are sperm that survive long enough to move into the fallopian tubes.

Close the door! (4, Funny)

Benanov (583592) | more than 6 years ago | (#21885772)

Leave me alone, I'm trying to save sick children in Africa!

fap fap fap

(Yes, I know they wouldn't be using actual sperm, merely copying it. But it's still a funny mental image.)

Obligatory... (2, Funny)

doi (584455) | more than 6 years ago | (#21885776)

I for one welcome our new, sticky, nano-robotic overlords!

Re:Obligatory... (1)

oahazmatt (868057) | more than 6 years ago | (#21886044)

I for one welcome our new, sticky, nano-robotic overlords!
It's just too bad that once you've gotten them fully powered, you'll be blind and won't be able to bear witness to the wonderful future you worked so hard for.

Bad Combination (1)

Azuma Hazuki (955769) | more than 6 years ago | (#21885790)

As anyone who's watched or heard of Mai-Hime knows, sperm and nanobots do not mix. Apparently prostate-specific antigen damages them somehow.

I do NOT want to read the comments! (1)

Tsu Dho Nimh (663417) | more than 6 years ago | (#21885794)

I'm afraid that there is no lower limit to the depths to which /.ers can or will go.

Re:I do NOT want to read the comments! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21886186)

Fear not. I'm sure we won't go much lower than the belt.

Re:I do NOT want to read the comments! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21886482)

no limit to the depths to which /.ers can or will go

Comment depth: 3

Re:I do NOT want to read the comments! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21886630)

Depth 4

Willing to sell sperm for a $1 per cell. (1)

tjstork (137384) | more than 6 years ago | (#21885800)

Would be the easiest way to make a few billion bucks that I've ever heard of.

Mom! You don't understand! (1)

urcreepyneighbor (1171755) | more than 6 years ago | (#21885802)

I'm not masturbating, I'm generating power for my nanobot army!

Re:Mom! You don't understand! (1)

techpawn (969834) | more than 6 years ago | (#21885958)

Wait sir! I wasn't violating her... I was giving her in injection of nanobots!

There is a place in hell... just for the people who comment on this...

This could be useful (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21885810)

Up to now, sperm has only been used to power ovum and kleenex. Which is only half useful and full of downsides when successful.

If only the Wachowski Brothers had known this (1)

ciaohound (118419) | more than 6 years ago | (#21885836)

the "Matrix" premise of robots using human beings as "batteries" might have been made a little more plausible... if slightly more disgusting.

Re:If only the Wachowski Brothers had known this (1)

davidsyes (765062) | more than 6 years ago | (#21886440)

Who knows? Maybe they DID surmise this, but decided against becoming known as the "Wack chow-ski" brothers...?

That's the ticket! (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21885856)

According to MSNBC, scientists are experimenting with using a sperm's flagellum to overcome the problem of supplying energy to nanobots...

Sure, that's what they are doing.

Occam's Razor (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21885880)

So, the nano-bots can be "implanted" into the person. Yeah, I think this is just a ploy by scientists to get laid.

I guess those bots "get around" with a lot of.... (1)

davidsyes (765062) | more than 6 years ago | (#21885906)

... Spunk...

Spurts & sprints?

Smooth, or chunky?

Choosy Bots work in a jiffy..

A bugfix to y'all slashdotters (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21885912)

--- slashcode.orig 2008-01-02 21:36:25.174107170 +0200
+++ slashcode 2008-01-02 21:36:55.919425508 +0200
@@ -1,3 +1,3 @@
  a) wank
  b) wipe keyboard with tissue
-c) throw tissue into garbage bin
+c) sell tissue to pharmaceutical company

Sperm as an energy source won't work (4, Funny)

Bloater (12932) | more than 6 years ago | (#21885930)

This is just another crackpot perpetual moisten machine.

Umm...no (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21885986)

I can't stop laughing. One of the few quadruple takes I've ever done in my life. I'll put this one right next to Nimoy and his Hobbit song.

So does this mean.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21885992)

we can add an adapter (ie "port") to our electronic devices.. so when they're dying, we just need to ejaculate in this port to recharge them? Can they make cars run off this too?

Peanut Butter Cups (1, Funny)

mcpkaaos (449561) | more than 6 years ago | (#21886028)

Scientist A: You got sperm on my nanobot!
Scientist B: You got your nanobot in my sperm!

...

I can see it now... (1)

the_tsi (19767) | more than 6 years ago | (#21886116)

Pope declares nanotechnology against the will of the Lord, demands Catholics around the world put an end to this horrible atrocity of wasting the sacred seed. ... and Michael Palin sings a song about it.

What a moronic story. (4, Informative)

jonnythan (79727) | more than 6 years ago | (#21886152)

This isn't about powering nanobots with sperm. It's about looking at sperm's locomotive method and adapting it to nanobots.

I'm not really sure why the article talks about sperm, specifically, but ATP is used all over the human body to do virtually everything, including move muscles.

Re:What a moronic story. (4, Insightful)

LanMan04 (790429) | more than 6 years ago | (#21886408)

I'm not really sure why the article talks about sperm, specifically...
Maybe because sperm are the only cells in the human body use flagella to locomote, which is what these nanobots are supposed to do?

Re:What a moronic story. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21886602)

Johnnythan is totally correct. ATP is the chemical used at the cellular level for releasing energy in aerobic metabolic processes. ADP is used in anerobic metabolic processes.
They probably only mentioned sperm because it would get more views.

I approve! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21886260)

I approve of this nanobot sperm idea. Anything makes more sense than trying to impregnate the shower tiles.

Animal experimentation is WRONG ;) (1)

ari_j (90255) | more than 6 years ago | (#21886272)

No animals were harmed in the making of this robot. (At least the animals didn't complain!)

And the next scandal will be: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21886276)

"Sperm powered nanobot fertilizes woman!
An Alaskan woman has sued the nanobot division of XXXXXX after becoming pregnant. She claims that the sperm powered nanobot fertilized her while performing a surgery on her womb."
It may be funny right now... but will it still be when it happens ?
--
What do you see here (.Y.) ?

Just Equip the Nanobots with Mitochondria (1)

Zymergy (803632) | more than 6 years ago | (#21886296)

Mitochondria are the manufacturers of nearly all ATP (Adenosine TriPhosphate) in the body... Just find a way to incorporate them "cybernetically" with the flagellated nanobots and you would need to just add simple sugars to power your sperm-tailed nanobots. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mitochondrion [wikipedia.org]

Of course, I can see a possible application... A new form of Cybernetic birth-control, where nanobots kill any real sperm that try to inseminate the egg, acting like a phalanx to prevent fertilization. (Or they could attack the egg, killing it. But that would have even more theologians up in arms... there are millions of sperm but (typically) only one egg.)

Then again, there are quite a few people that believe that "Every Sperm Is Sacred": http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uNgotUM4gk8 [youtube.com]

Do your part! (1)

ryanvm (247662) | more than 6 years ago | (#21886366)

Excellent. In the name of science I vow to triple my current sperm production output. Hmmm - I wonder if I can get a grant...

Profit! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21886444)

1. Watch a video of Jessica Alba.
2. ?????
3. Profit!!!

Where does.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21886458)

the line begin? I'm all for donating to the cause of science. I'll let them examine my little guys if the price is right and they have enough palm grease for the job.

Sperm Bourse (1)

Jedi Holocron (225191) | more than 6 years ago | (#21886460)

Of course, it'll only a matter of time till the SPEC (Sperm Producing and Exporting Countries) cartel forms and sets up the first Sperm Bourse.

Pricing will be in Jizzars and sold by the Bukakke.

I couldn't resist (1)

nawcom (941663) | more than 6 years ago | (#21886550)

Droppin' loooooooowwdds!!!!! All over yerrrr zerrrooos and oneesssss!!!! Eat it you digital nano-bitch!!!! Yeeeeeahhhhhh...


(A bad Nick Manning reference. Go ahead. Mod me down. I deserve it.)

Important for two reasons (1)

hyades1 (1149581) | more than 6 years ago | (#21886582)

"...a sperm's flagellum to overcome the problem of supplying energy to nanobots that could be implanted in the body as smart probes..."

For the first time since the beginning of recorded civilization, the words "sperm" and "smart" have been found in the same sentence.

Not to mention that the profound financial implications of sperm as energy bring a whole new meaning to the term "sperm bank". I call dibs on "Canada Thrust" and "Bank of Nova Scrotum".

2000 Spermpower (1)

BigAssRat (724675) | more than 6 years ago | (#21886588)

I guess rating nanobots in "sperm power" would make more sense than .000000000001 HP, you can just say that little baby (no pun intended) takes 2000 sperm power.
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