Consider a bird.

No, no. Not like that. I mean, act as if you never saw one at all. As if a bird hasn’t ever existed before.

No references.

No memories.

Just pure imagination. All its systems working together to create flight. And self-awareness. And self-reliance. And it’s flock mentality. Maybe a little homing sense thrown in for good measure.

Only now, you’re charged with actually making one.

Right now.

For the very first time.

What tools would you use? Which technologies and materials would you employ? Today, 2014.

Where would you even begin?

Considering your prototype works, you’re now charged with mass producing them. But here’s the catch. They need to self-replicate. So your factory only needs to produce one. But every other subsequent bird needs to grow inside a self-contained (ie, all food inside), geometrically perfect oblong sphere able to withstand immense pressure and the elements, yet thin enough that the offspring can break through once they’ve outgrown the module. And your design material needs to be semi porous for breathability. You know, just because.

If you master that, let’s really make it interesting. Your new goal is coming up with 10,000 different models; you can even combine models mid-stream to produce new ones if you want. I want variations in wing size, body shape, color, eating habits, behavioral patterns and more. I want some that talk, some that swim, and some that bang their beaks against trees like an impact drill. I want fluffy ones, fat ones, and others that stand on one leg. Shoot, give me a few that can hover or fly backwards and I’ll give you bonus points—cause, man, that’s fly.

Thanks, God.