Jailbreaking Metal 

Fortunately, we’re still a ways off from the T-1000.

Do you want terminators? Because this is how you get terminators!

In a cheeky video featuring some strong T2 callbacks, a Lego man-shaped mold of the magnetoactive solid-liquid can even be seen liquifying and moving through tiny jail cell bars before reforming into its original structure. If that last part seems a bit impossible, well, it is. For now.

“There is some context to the video. It [looks] like magic,” Carmel Majidi, a senior author and mechanical engineer at Carnegie Mellon, explains to PopSci with a laugh. According [to] Majidi, everything leading up to the model’s reformation is as it appears—the shape does liquify before being drawn through the mesh barrier via alternating electromagnetic currents. From there, however, someone pauses the camera to recast the mold into its original shape.

If a robot can melt itself to escape, but it can’t reform into a solid, we’re probably pretty safe from it. Maybe scientists can stop there.