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"Evolutionary success ... is going to absolutely require mobility on, at a minimum, an interplanetary scale. We either go or we die out."
- Richard Morgan

Robot Bird  
  A small winged UAV that can mimic a bird in flight.  

When you're a Stinker, and other people can't stand to be around you, the company of intelligent robotic birds with excellent voice recognition abilities and conversational skills can be a blessing.

He ruffled his plastic feathers. "I have calculated... that the retentive capacity of my memory is now restricted to a mere 70,000 additional words - how about fixing me up with two more retentive banks?"

...Craig smiled faintly. "As soon as possible and that's a promise." Gun extended one wing, examined his feathers and said: "Many thanks."

When he had first built them, they had been crude indeed, flying mechanisms with little more than a reflex-response unit. Over the years, however, he had given them life and intelligence... They had developed into personalities and provided stimulating companions in his isolation. He had given them free-decision, apart from their business as bodyguards and all three had total recall. Gun, the golden eagle, was a compulsive reader...

Recky, the first of the two kestrals, was apt to become lost in classical music while Screen, the second one, was literally working his way through college in a variety of abstract subjects.

From Invader on My Back, by Philip E. High.
Published by Ace Books in 1968
Additional resources -

Here's a typical sample of Gun's interaction with Craig's enemies:

The operator gave it magnification. "Okay, it's a bird, yeah a bird, small eagle or something."

"- what kind of bird flies at ninety-seven thousand feet for God's sake?"

High above, Gun folded his wings and dropped like a stone. As he dropped his body vibrated oddly and things happened to the ship below him. Sparks danced on its back and where the sparks danced, the surface opened jaggedly spraying smoke and fragments...

Compare to the metal birds from Vulcan's Hammer (1960), by Philip K. Dick.

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Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from Invader on My Back
  More Ideas and Technology by Philip E. High
  Tech news articles related to Invader on My Back
  Tech news articles related to works by Philip E. High

Robot Bird-related news articles:
  - Robocopter Listens And Obeys
  - Robot Bird Alights On Human Hand
  - SHEPHERD-MIL, A Birdlike Soaring UAV
  - Robo-Raven Flapping Wing Robot Bird

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