Seriously, you couldn’t make this up.
Thinking of ways in which robots can be incorporated into everyday life, designers James Auger and Jimmy Loizeau are building carnivorous furniture that’s functional and powered by meat. For example, they’ve created a table that functions the regular way (uh, as something you eat off of) as well as in a technological way (with a built-in digital clock).
(More on TIME.com: When will man become machine? 2045)
Sounds basic enough, but here’s where things get a little… odd. The technology is powered by meat. Specifically, mouse meat.
Discovery News explains the process as follows:
“The table baits a mouse up through one oversized leg and to the center of the table, where a trapdoor opens and they fall into a chamber full of microbes which digest the rodent and use the energy to power the table’s electronics (presumably the sensor that detects the mouse).”
So think of it as a table-meets-digital-clock-meets-robot-meets-mousetrap.
Apparently the furniture/robot/meat-eater is mostly for entertainment value, though NewsFeed doubts the mice find it so entertaining. (via Discovery News)
(More on TIME.com: See Cyberdyne’s real robot)