Can Transformers Eat Human Food?

Discussion in 'Transformers General Discussion' started by Spunky, Dec 30, 2010.

  1. Spunky

    Spunky Well-Known Member

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    I know. This is a stupid topic. But with so many references that TFs make to human food in various continuities, I wonder. Personally, I don't see how a non-carbon based lifeform can derive any nutrition from carbon-based food. If TFs are biomechanical, as in the movies, and made up of billions of self-replicating nanobots, and consequently capable of growth and healing, it stands to reason that in addition to energy, they would need to ingest nutrition. That nutrition would be in the form of the elements and compounds their bodies are made out of. If one of the elements in their bodies is iron, they may have to ingest iron. Chewing solid iron would be difficult and cumbersom even for a robot. So they may ingest it in a thin flakes or in a liquid ion form. They would need some type of circulatory system to deliver the nutrients to all the billions of microscopic nanobots just like we need one for our cells. In "Transformers Prime", it is made clear that TFs have veins that transport Energon with most likely at least one heart pumping that Energon. Nutrients are probabely dissolved into the Energon just like they are in our blood.

    But could they eat human food, even if it gives them no nutritional value what-so-ever, without getting really sick?
     
  2. FanimusMaximus

    FanimusMaximus Well-Known Member

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    I think they just convert food it into energy, but I dont think their much energy from the food considering that they are robots.
     
  3. tfmad2010

    tfmad2010 Oh Hai Internet!

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    Don't they consume Energon for their nutrients?
     
  4. Spunky

    Spunky Well-Known Member

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    If they are made out of billions of self-replicating and self-healing nanobots, they are going to need to consume nutrients as well as energy. They will have a metabolism just like humans and all organic life on Earth does. They will, by the definition of life according to biologists, share at least one of the characteristics that separate life from non-life. In both the movies and "Transformers Prime" they refer to themselves not as robots, but as "robotic organisms".
     
  5. Tigertrack

    Tigertrack Back In The Game!

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    As long as they have Mr. Fusion installed on their backs.

    "Think Back To The Future Part Two" :D 
     
  6. Vexxet

    Vexxet Autocon

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    in G1 the insecticons ate all the worlds crops and turned it into energon cubes for megatron.
     
  7. Tigertrack

    Tigertrack Back In The Game!

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    I think the Insecticons were unique in that aspect. None of the other Transformers were shown to eat human-food.
     
  8. Spunky

    Spunky Well-Known Member

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    Energon is nothing more than an energy source. Oxygen-breathing organic lifeforms, such as ourselves, derive our energy from that produced when oxygen combusts with the carbon molecules in our bodies, mainly carbohydrates, producing carbon dioxide and water as a result. A car gets energy in a similar fashion by combusting oxygen with it's carbon-based fuel. The products of the combustion chemical reactions in our bodies and cars are the same: carbon dioxide, water, and ENERGY. That energy is what powers us and a car.

    However, unlike a car, we need more than carbohydrates and oxygen to survive. Why? Because unlike a car, we are made out of billions of self-replicating and self-repairing nonmachines called cells. Those cells, in the process of growth and reproduction, need the things they are made out of and use for their own metabolism and growth. They need proteins, vitamins, and minerals among other things. It is our cellular structure that allows us to grow and self repair. If you scratch a car, that scratch will not repair on its own. If you scratch us, it will heal provided that we consume enough energy and nutrients for it to do so.

    According to the movies at least, TFs, like humans, are made out of billions of nanomachines, have metabolism, and can heal like humans if they get damaged.
     
  9. MenasorMaster

    MenasorMaster Stunticon Warrior

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    I too think there is Nanotechnology based food on cybertron which is created in factories. energon alone is too little, they may use it to keep their spark function as it takes a large amount of energy, but for their nanocells etc. they need Nanotechnology based food.
     
  10. Spunky

    Spunky Well-Known Member

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    Yum, yum, yum.
     
  11. firehawc_69

    firehawc_69 cloppers = ignore list

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  12. D-Unit

    D-Unit #1 Heel

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    The Insecticons definitely could, and laer, the Beast Wars characters could. In g1 though, I'm not sure about the others. And the other series I don't follow well-enough
     
  13. SMOG

    SMOG Vocab-champion ArgueTitan

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    Personally, I always found the aspect of TFs "eating" anything pretty dumb, but then, they have 2 arms, 2 legs and a conventional human face (many do, at least) so I guess some concession has to be made for fantasy here.

    I never liked the "nanobot" theory... because
    A) it makes them feel less like big, heavy machinery, and therefore less abstract... and that living/machine paradox was always something that I liked about them. It made them unique, special, hard-to-define by conventional human standards, which I believe is a good thing.

    B) often in sci-fi, "nanotech" is just treated as a catch-all magical solution/plot device for anything. You want machines that heal? Nanotech. Radically reformatting your alt-mode at the drop of a hat? Nanotech.

    I hate that shit. A little more nanotech, and TFs won't even need grinding pistons and gears and rotator cuffs and vehicle kibble anymore... they'll just be smooth, shiny greek statues that "morph" into whatever the hell they want. And while I'm sure there's some slash-fiction demographic of the fandom that loves that idea, I think it just plain sucks.

    Yes, but let's remember that going by the actual roots and origins of the word "robot" (and robotic), that term... "robotic organisms" really means NOTHING. Our own associations with the word, implying some kind of artificial automaton, would have no meaning for a Cybertronian. TF's have their own non-sentient machines that they use for various tasks... so within their own language, they would no doubt create a distinction between what we would call "robots" and themselves.

    In short, Transformers describing themselves as "robotic organisms" OR "robots" is just not very smart writing. Etymologically speaking, it doesn't mean anything.

    As for fuel and Energon...

    This will no doubt clash with many of the other canonical sources, but my "inclusive" explanation is the following...

    Transformers have built-in energy converter systems, the most rudimentary and essential being a fuel pump and advanced form of a combustion engine. They are capable of ingesting refined fossil fuels (or similar). This reflects the high emphasis put on basic, recognizable engine systems mentioned in the G1 comics and Tech Specs. Transformers are still, in their way, very much like machines.

    Of course with technological advances throughout the ages, the internal energy conversion systems have gotten more advanced. Older bots might prefer oil/gas based fuels because that's what they're used to, but in newer converter cores, other substances might also be consumed to keep the system running.

    There is an electrically charged substance produced by these internal energy convertors, a sort of plasma which is distributed to all online systems through a type of circulatory system. This the real "lifeblood" of a Transformer.

    At some point, perhaps before the war, a revolutionary pre-converted, concentrated fuel substitute was developed... Energon. This is functionally the same as the internal energy that normally would be processed and produced by the fuel core/engines. Energon is much more efficient since it can be used directly by the body as energy without a conversion process, and is more compact. It is essentially a nutrient-rich baby-food/astronaut food... or even similar to blood itself (which makes TFs sort of like vampires, if you really want to take the comparison too far).

    After using Energon for long periods of time, many TFs have simply shut down their internal converter cores due to disuse. Some newer bots may be manufactured without these systems even. However, the side effect is that these TFs would be totally dependent on Energon, lacking the sufficient systems to synthesize their own internally. Ironically, this means that on "wild" planets, like Earth, newer bots might be helpless without someone to process Energon for them. Older bots might be able to get by on other fuel sources, providing their internal systems have been maintained, and aren't too rusty. :) 

    This explanation sort of allows for the use of Energon, while still acknowledging other fuel sources, and incidents such as the Marvel issue when a starving Megatron desperately tries to ingest raw coal, but then pronounces it "indigestible".

    Haha! That's the first thing that came to mind for me. According to my above description, many TFs would have something similar inside them, though not nearly as versatile as Doc Brown's. :) 

    Exactly. I think the Insecticons have some kind of special matter-to-energy conversion engine at work in their bodies... something that makes them unique, and may actually tie into their ability to self-replicate as well... sort of a "matter-to-energy-back-to-matter-again" function. Makes them pretty special.

    zmog
     
  14. Foster

    Foster Super Mod

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    Iron? Feed them some spinach.
     
  15. Ash from Carolina

    Ash from Carolina Junior Smeghead

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    Perhaps Energon contains more than just energy. There must be some reason that the Transformers must turn other forms of energy into Energon first instead of just plugging into the wall socket or something.

    You also have to wonder what happens to all the bits that aren't directly part of the energy. Like when oil is converted to Energon but there doesn't seem to be any byproducts to the process.
     
  16. fabexmax

    fabexmax Well-Known Member

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    Unicron ate Spike and Daniel, and was going to digest Spike. And I think it was HunGarr who had Daniel in his mouth and broke his legs. Snacky time maybe?
     
  17. SMOG

    SMOG Vocab-champion ArgueTitan

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    Yeah, but Hun-Grrr hates the idea of eating anything organic. It spooks him. And it's unclear whether he actually digests what he eats, or whether it's just used for his "spitballs" later.

    This sidesteps the issue that he's actually eating things with his feet anyway. :) 

    zmog
     
  18. Kaymac

    Kaymac I'M REALLY FEELIN' IT!

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    There are many fuel sources Transformers use, with Energon being the most efficient. However, you have to remember gas and oil are made of long dead plant and animal matter. A Transformers might be able to use human food as an energy source, but to very little effect. They'd have to eat a VERY large hamburger to get any significant amount of energy. XD
     
  19. Foster

    Foster Super Mod

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    It was Snapdragon, in Rebirth.

    I remember because I love him SO much for it.
     
  20. KA

    KA PENIS GOES WHERE?!!

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    I think somebody like gnaw probably could.
     

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