Google has been awarded a patent related to systems and methods for "allocating tasks to a plurality of robotic devices".
Sprawled across its Mountain View base, the Chocolate Factory hivemind may indeed be plotting world domination, but for the moment it is at least conscious of the need to collaborate with the state in establishing its exclusive rights to the technology it will use to do so.
Presumably booted up with obedient personalities, the Googlebot patent does not explicitly establish the murderous machines' mission to eat women and steal the jobs of hardworking, talented, and attractive journalists.
What it does establish however is a method of task allocation that is distributed over a plurality of devices utilising a "health level" based on the expected remaining amount of time until the robot needs maintenance.
It should be noted that the robot army "may be configured to receive information from the computing component via the network associated with instructions for performing one or more tasks".
While the immediate threat posed by AI has been dismissed, the patent details the allocating of tasks to robotic devices in a robot-cloud interaction.
Campaigners against fully autonomous weapons systems continue to plead for "appropriate levels of human judgment". Will their cries be heard? ®