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Someone in Atlanta created what appears to be a homemade Dalek to help deal with streetcorner criminal activity:

Rufus Terrill has had it with the drug dealers, petty thieves and vandals he says roam the streets outside his downtown Atlanta bar, O’Terrills. Instead of calling the police or hiring private security guards, Terrill built his own security robot.

Watching the video leaves me with a bit of an uncomfortable vigilante aftertaste, which is a little strange since I can sympathize with the difficulties living in an area like this. It’s just not realistic to head down the street at night and ask people to leave.

All that aside, it’s just an imposing looking tele-operated vehicle with a squirt gun and a speaker. The reality is that it’s probably in more danger of being tipped over sideways than hurting anyone.

The real hack here is that (for better or worse) someone’s invented a home-brew, tele-operated psychology counter-weapon. By removing the immediate threat of violence, the driver is able to communicate in a hostile environment. If you made the thing look like Ronald McDonald and had it sing the theme song to Barney instead of squirting water, the robot would probably be even more effective.

Robot keeps Midtown block safe – [via] Link, Video

  • Peter

    I agree that it’s a little weird to have a robot patrolling the streets, and that most drug dealers wouldn’t leave simply for a water pistol on wheels, but I think the reason it works is because of the spotlight and webcam. They say that having an alarm system or deadbolt lock on your door immediately reduces your chances of having your house broken into simply because it’s easier for a prospective criminal to get caught. I think this works the same way: if you’re dealing crack on the street corner it’s a whole lot easier for the police to see the bags filled with suspicious white powder if there’s a spot light on you.

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