An anonymous reader writes with news of a research project at Harvard into controlling large swarms of small robots
. This article describes what they call Kilobots
. (Which, for clarity's sake, have nothing to do with killing. Yet.) Quoting:
"They're fairly simple little robots about the size of a quarter that can move around on vibrating legs, blink their lights, and communicate with each other. On an individual basis, this isn't particularly impressive, but Kilobots aren't designed to be used on an individual basis. Costing a mere $14 each and buildable in about five minutes, you don't just get yourself one single Kilobot. Or ten. Or a hundred. They're designed to swarm in the thousands."