The Machine scale is a scale used to describe a individual's machine type by judging how much artificial and organic material make up their body and how human or non-human they look. For physical machines, these can be separated into 3 distinct categories: cyborg, android and robot. The scale was first conceptualized by Twitter user C0NN1E to give machine-identified individuals an easier way to figure out what type of machine they are.
Many machine-identified individuals have struggled to figure out what kind of machine they are. The Machine scale was created to provide and more concise method of identifying what kind of a machine a person is. For physical forms, there are 3 distinct categories:
- Cyborg: A cyborg is an individual who sports some form of body modification that aids or improves a certain function.
- Android or Gynoid: An android is an individual who is fully mechanical and artificial, yet still resembles a masculine human in some way. A gynoid is an individual who is fully mechanical and artificial, yet still resembles a feminine human in some way. Alternatively, a machine with masculine and feminine characteristics could be called an androgynoid.
- Robot: A robot is an individual who is fully mechanical and artificial, but share very little in resemblance with humans. Most robots typically retain the general bipedal appearance of a humanoid, but some diverge from that.
For non-physical forms, there is 1 distinct category:
- AI: While most machines could be considered artificial intelligence, in this specific case, AI refers to non-physical forms, such as residing in a device like a computer or a mainframe.
Table of the scale
The cyborg side of the scale is based on how much organic and artificial material makes up an individual, ranging from having minor modifications, such as a pacemaker, cybernetic limbs or hearing aids, to a "brain in a jar" scenario. The android and gynoid side of the scale is based on how human-appearing the individual is, ranging from having human like skin, to having only a face the appears human. The robot side of the scale is based on how non-human the individual is, ranging from having a vaguely human stature and bipedal structure, to not appearing as a human at all and having different limb structures.
|Light Cyborg||Mostly organic with minimal artificial and mechanical modifications to aid in function (pacemakers, hearing aids, glasses, phones, etc.)|
|Medium Cyborg||Organic parts are still present, but most of the body has been replaced with mechanical modifications (limb replacements, brain prosthesis, mechanical organs, etc.)|
|Heavy Cyborg||Little organic parts remain; the original brain and head typically remains or the brain has been moved to a robotic body (brain in jar)|
|Light Android||Fully mechanical with no organic components; still resembles a human and usually has faux human skin to mimic humans|
|Medium Android||Fully mechanical with no organic components; generally resembles a human, but body may not be made to look like human skin|
|Heavy Android||Fully mechanical with no organic components; the line between human and machine is generally more of a grey area|
|Humanoid Robot||Fully mechanical with no organic components; body form is humanoid but there are various differences (head shapes, limb sizes, face displays, etc.)|
|Non-Humanoid Robot||Fully mechanical with no organic components; body form is non-humanoid and may resemble animals or something else entirely (quadrupedal, insect/animal appearance, etc.)|
While the scale is useful for many machine-identified individuals, identity can be described as a ever-changing and complex concept that can't always be attributed to a scale. The machine scale serves merely as a tool to ease in the process of identity and it is not necessarily required to use. Many machine-identified individuals may opt to use words such as "android", "cyborg" or "robot" out of pure preference.