Stuff of Nightmares: Scientists Train Goldfish to Drive a Vehicle

It is always a mystery to me what motivates scientists. I’ve known so very few in my life that I’m sure my mental image of them is really just a caricature: a bunch of weird people in lab coats who spend their time thinking of what to do with small creatures.

Wait. Maybe I’m right.

Scientists have finally figured out a way to follow up the brilliant shrimp on a treadmill study and — boy howdy — it’s a doozy:

More from The New York Post:

Scientists have trained goldfish to drive a vehicle around a room — and steer towards fishy treats.

The creatures can maneuver a specially designed Fish Operated Vehicle by swimming in certain directions in a small tank mounted in place of a driver’s seat.

The pioneering FOV reacts to a fish’s movements in the water to accelerate, turn and stop.

A team of biomedical engineers and neuroscientists were able to train goldfish to drive the “car” and navigate themselves to targets to win rewards of food pellets.

Six different fish successfully steered the vehicle across rooms to the targets whilst avoiding dead ends and decoy targets.

It’s always been freaky enough to deal with the prospect of betta fish getting out of their bowls and flopping to their deaths underneath the bed. Now we’re faced with a future where we might trip over Goldie while she’s out driving around on a midnight snack cruise.

Forget worrying about robots turning on humans, the best and brightest among us will soon be engineering koi to terrorize us in sports cars.

We will, of course, have reached peak dystopia when Future Koi have their own robots.

Sleep well, friends.

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