A clank is, essentially, what we in the outside world would call a robot. Clanks vary widely in form, function, intelligence, and complexity, though there appear to be some limits. For example, true human-level artificial intelligence is rare, only known to have been produced by particularly gifted Sparks such as van Rijn and (working from an example) Tarvek Sturmvoraus. A non-canonical by Professors Foglio suggests that Agatha Heterodyne's Dingbots are as small as autonomous clanks get.
Clanks can, however, get as big as Sparky engineering and resources can make them, and big intimidating clanks that can stomp ordinary soldiers flat appear to have claimed a place in Spark warfare. Some of these have either run amok or simply been forgotten, and can be found roaming the Wastelands in various states of repair. Those that are still active are best avoided.
In colloquial usage, a clank is anything that goes "clank", though sticklers cite the ability to act without an operator as the difference between a clank and other machines. In this sense, Castle Heterodyne (which can apparently think but not travel) would be considered a clank while Castle Wulfenbach (which can apparently travel but not think) would not. Thus the and Medical Transport Clank have not yet demonstrated themselves to be clanks in the strictest sense. They may, of course, have an undemonstrated autonomous mode, such as that demonstrated by (which are not canon, of course).
List of Clanks
|The clanks that have appeared in the series so far have included:
Note that this list is