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another one that could be quoted for contemporary automata : the German Dead Chickens (, currently (2004) viewable in the streets of Lille, France.

   The animated figures stand
   Adorning every public street
   And seem to breathe in stone, or
   move their marble feet. ...

___________________________ -where does that quote come from?i have looked at numerous translations and none of them have this version —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:27, 9 October 2007 (UTC)


Is biomechanical realy an appropriate word to use.

"Automata" is a more general term than this (e.g. it's use in math and computing science).

if you think that autmatons are cool check out the book The Making of Hugo Cabret its awsome! but it has over 200 pages of pictures, so if you dont like to read its awsome too! M20 23:17, 27 May 2007 (UTC)

Ancient Automatta[edit]

When I read this title, what comes to mind is the greek goddess' mechanical owl. Should that be mentioned?

Was there really a mechanical owl or is that just from the Clash of the Titans movie? Though I know there are stories of statues coming to life, and of Hephaestus creating gold and silver robot helpers.Rglong 02:20, 6 September 2007 (UTC)

Help me out here[edit]

If the word means that something is self driven, why is it commonly used to describe mindless followers? Is it just to compare them to robots? This has always confused me.Rglong 02:21, 6 September 2007 (UTC)

Automata repeat the same performance, over and over, without thought, never changing. A mindless follower repeats the same performance over and ...... tooold 06:45, 10 October 2007 (UTC)


The article does not make clear where to use 'automaton' instead of 'robot' or 'droid'. The context of the article however implies that automata are purely mechanical devices without the use of electronics or informatics technology (which would produce 'cybernetics').

The 'Examples' section should need some cleanup. Someone had added the cyborg characters from Mortal Kombat series, and his logic eludes me. I think that sci-fi references should be removed, since those cases are robotic. Pictureuploader (talk) 10:56, 22 January 2008 (UTC)

Commercial links[edit]

Are commercial links allowed? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:34, 27 March 2008 (UTC)

See External Links for guidelines. Normally commercial links should be avoided but there are circumstances where they are reasonable. Dmcq (talk) 10:14, 30 April 2009 (UTC)


There's a bit of conflict in that the article says Al-Jazari is credited with making the first programmable automaton whereas Hero described a programmable cart. Perhaps the second 'automaton' means a humanlike one? Dmcq (talk) 10:04, 30 April 2009 (UTC)


The link to for Regiomontanus' two purported automata doesn't work, and I can't find any citation there that has the information. The wooden eagle and iron fly also appear on the Regiomontanus article and had been flagged as needing a citation. A search for Hakewill at the Wisconsin site yields one page with nothing useful on automata. I have removed this information on both here and at Regiomantus, but restoring it may be just a matter of finding a replacement for the link . Bob Burkhardt (talk) 13:14, 26 August 2009 (UTC)

Misuse of sources[edit]

Jagged 85 (talk · contribs) is one of the main contributors to Wikipedia (over 67,000 edits; he's ranked 198 in the number of edits), and practically all of his edits have to do with Islamic science, technology and philosophy. This editor has persistently misused sources here over several years. This editor's contributions are always well provided with citations, but examination of these sources often reveals either a blatant misrepresentation of those sources or a selective interpretation, going beyond any reasonable interpretation of the authors' intent. Please see: Wikipedia:Requests for comment/Jagged 85. I searched the page history, and found 18 edits by Jagged 85 (for example, see this series of edits). Tobby72 (talk) 18:54, 13 June 2010 (UTC)

Yes. I've heard and read about this case, that was kind of "resolved" today resolved in April 2010. There are other cases of long term desinformation such as mysterious recurring star names with doubtful etymology. Rursus dixit. (mbork3!) 09:07, 28 December 2010 (UTC)

Verify credibility[edit]

The source was marked with a {{Verify credibility|date=September 2010}}, but a shallow reading thru of NYT: Edward Rothstein's Article and's rebuttal seems to indicate that the NYT criticism is sweepingly bonking for presenting allegations about possible muslim scientific influences and presenting an image of general muslim science influence on early western science, while annoyedly shouts "we said 'may have'". This sounds like a typical historicians debate. should IMHO be regarded as credible when it presents facts, and as speculative when it presents speculations.

The link marked as {{Verify credibility}} occurred in section Automata from the 13th to 19th centuries, that says that

Al-Jazari described complex programmable humanoid automata amongst other machines he designed and constructed in the “Book of Knowledge of Ingenious Mechanical Devices” in 1206.

The link provided, exhibits images from the book of Al-Jazari, what better proofs are there??

If dislike, first read thru the above links and make your own statement here! Rursus dixit. (mbork3!) 08:55, 28 December 2010 (UTC)

Odd division of the history[edit]

The section "ancient automata" includes lots of medieval stuff from Baghdad etc. - well after the end of classical antiquity. I think it would make more sense to have "ancient automata" cover the Greek/Hellenistic and Chinese stuff, the legendary material about Solomon, etc.; have a "medieval automata" section with the Islamic, Villard de Honnecourt, Yuan Dynasty stuff; and put the rest of the historical stuff under "Renaissance and Early Modern automata" or something. Also, "other historic automata" seems an unnecessary section; Archytas' dove and the ancient Chinese birds should go under "ancient automata", and the Smithsonian monk should go under the Renaissance/Early modern section. Vultur (talk) 00:39, 9 April 2011 (UTC)

Next time perhaps you would like to wait for someone to reply to your posts, or give it a good few days with no replies, before major changes? Chaosdruid (talk) 18:47, 9 April 2011 (UTC)

Numerous automatas in European late medieval Clocktowers.[edit]

It need some references to numerous late-medieval automatons in the clocktowers around Europe. For example St Mark's Clocktower, Torre del Mangia in Italy, but they are also very numerous in Switzerland.


I mentioned these in the see also section, but perhaps they're best just mentioned in the text.

What is an Automaton?[edit]

If a human operates a machine, it is a manual machine. If a machine is self-operating it is an automatic machine. Thus, given this articles definition, "An automaton is a self-operating machine", all automatic machines are automatons, right? (talk) 07:34, 10 September 2012 (UTC)

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  1. ^ Kirsty Boyle
  2. ^ Thomas Edison's talking doll