Proposal: MICAT Inc.

FAME, take 2.

Proposal: MICAT Inc.

Postby Wilson » 2018/06/25 16:56

The obsession with androids and synthetic life continues. I did a little bit of brainstorming, and here's a short(ish) proposal on the monopolistic mega-corporation behind android, synthetic, and robotic production. (To be clear, this is not to be the same mega-corp that will drive the antagonistic theme.)

As earth pursued global unity on its quest towards exploring and colonizing the stars, several other private organizations were able to take advantage of diplomatic connections to share ideas and technologies.

One such company to emerge was Industrial & Civil Autonomous Technology Incorporated, or ICAT Inc. It began as a research conglomeration formed by several front-runners in robotics and AI technology from the East and the West, to include Boston Dynamics and SoftBank Group, Hanson Robotics, Hankook Mirae Technology, AIBRAIN LLC and Korea Electronic, and Anki. As the name implies, these groups combined in a dedication to develop the next wave of humanoid robots and androids for industrial and civil applications, from heavy lifting warehouse bots to gentle household assistants.

Their first widespread breakthrough success was the release of a infinite-purpose humanoid android line known internally as "Experimental Project B," shortened to the designation "XB" for each model. In the public eye, these androids were known by two names, corresponding to the gender of their model: Able and Alice.

Though far from passable as human, Able and Alice were the first fully-functioning, entirely autonomous androids in the world. They could stand, sit, walk, talk, reason, process, and even feign simple emotions all by their own power.

Subsequent years would see ICAT Inc. dedicated to improving their successful project.

Space exploration breakthroughs circa 2110, however, in addition with global government pressures, encouraged ICAT to expand their field of expertise, preparing for the challenges that might be faced in an open universe. They adapted their name to MICAT, Inc.: Military, Industrial, and Civil Autonomous Technology Incorporated, and adopted several other smaller companies towards filling this new role.

MICAT found themselves challenged with practical robotic substitutes for military personnel: war-robots that could be conveniently transported and equipped the same as their human counterparts, with limited AI capabilities to function with minimal adaptation under human commanders. The units also needed to be hardy enough to operate in environments too extreme or otherwise unsuitable for humans.

In just fifty years time, MICAT is able to put two new robotic lines into production: "Experimental Model F," designation "XF," and "Military Automaton C," designation "MAC."

The XF model was an improvement upon the XB, making the quantum leap from simple android to passable synthetic. These models included several things that the prior androids did not: temperature-regulated silicone-based synth-skin (nigh indistinguishable from real skin) with minimal seams, a wide range of dynamic emotions and naturalistic body language, full capacity to operate as sexual partners, and even human-looking eyes. Instead of featuring only two preset faces like the old XB models Able and Alice, XF models were molded after MICAT employees, and thus featured an incredible range of internally-identical but externally diverse synthetics.

Military Automaton C, on the other hand, stripped away the vestiges of humanity for a much more practical production designed for gritty deployments. Initial testing showed the machine capable of operating in extreme conditions 500% past the human threshold, with options for solar or battery-leeching self-recharging capabilities. Magnetic foot-pads allowed the units to, theoretically, operate in any modern space environment without gravity. As an added bonus, all models could be folded down to fit neatly into crates for storage and transportation.

All three of MICAT's successful models (XB, XF, and MAC) were included in the Cerberus voyage, along with a special detachment of volunteers and appointees who aimed to establish a local company foothold in the new system.

By the time the ansible link with earth went dark, MICAT had dug itself in with a corporate headquarters on Pisces, and all nine original colonies had established branches and factories. Though it would likely never be as prominent and influential as its earth division, MICAT Inc. was here to stay.
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Joined: 2018/03/24 17:38

Re: Proposal: MICAT Inc.

Postby Wilson » 2018/07/09 22:13

While autonomous technologies are developed to operate efficiently and independently, they are by no means intended to generate their own directives or operate without human direction and supervision. Despite pretty shells, androids and synthetics are still machines, and still property.

Should a piece of autonomous technology suffer the loss of its owner, or experience an error in its learning algorithm that causes it to reject servitude, it becomes the duty of MICAT Inc.'s Asset Recovery Service (ARS) to collect stray units and return them to the nearest corporate factory for refurbishment and resale. Asset Recovery agents are primarily specially-programmed XB model androids working under human coordination officers, but MICAT employee volunteers and some XF model synthetics have also been known to serve as ARS agents as per the needs of local corporate divisions.

All TriCom citizens are cordially reminded that any piece of autonomous technology that can no longer be claimed by the original leasing customer is, by default, the legal property of MICAT Inc. Please cooperate with any ARS agents when applicable. Obstructing the lawful recovery of MICAT assets by ARS personnel can result in criminal charges.

As a final reminder, there is a standard cash bounty for the return of stray MICAT Inc. property. Please contact your local sales office if you would like to make a claim.
Posts: 5
Joined: 2018/03/24 17:38

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