Despite all the different forms Livastian MAI can come in, they always contain the same inner workings that make them sapient. Be it their artificial nervous system or other ways they perceive the world.
Layout of The Box
On the outside, the "Box" or the system that contains the AI, looks quite simple. On the inside though, it's much more complex than what meets the eye. See, all LAI use a storage system that takes advantage of DNA. What the Box does, is store information by taking what is perceived and constructing strands of DNA in a translatable pattern.
Outside the Box, The largest bundle of wires work to transfer information from the nerves, optics and audio intakes, and go into the box that sends the digital data to short term memory. In short term memory, the digital data is translated into DNA strands; after translated, the initial data is deleted.
In the Box, there's six small chambers that hold the unassembled nucleotides used to construct the DNA, the primary chamber that holds and organizes the existing DNA, and the chamber that holds 'instinctual data.' This is the data that all LAI are equipped with that tells them how to perform motor functions, gives them morality and other psychological traits that allow them to comfortably interact with humans and each other.
The thick cable extending from the base of the Box controls the output, anything from a twitch in the optic to driving the vessel forward. The cable only stays so thick for a short distance, then begins to branch off to virtually every corner of the bot; damaging this cable, depending on how close to the base, can have a similar impact as paralysis in humans. The only difference is that, with time, the cable can be repaired.
Lastly, there's a small bundle of wires that extend out from the Instinctual Data Box. The only function these serve is to go along the side of every optic, and if a specific voltage is applied to the receptor, it will ping the Box, and give the state of the AI. This was used during the war to find out which incapacitated units had to be retrieved after battle by using the outer ring of the optic to show a certain color. If the ring turns green, the unit is alive. If it turns red, the unit has died.
Artificial Nervous System
MAI nerves aren't all that complex. The modules are just small pressure receptors on connectable plates that line the unit somewhere under the armor. Due to sensitivity, the plates should not be completely exposed, as it can easily cause the unit to experience pain-like irritation upon contact. Saying pain-like, it's worth noting that MAI can't feel 'true' pain, or much else, for that matter. The only thing the nerves detect is the strength of pressure. Despite this, normal contact and damage can still be differentiated.
How The Optics Work
The optics of MAI, despite their ability to display such a wide range of emotion, are surprisingly not screens, but rather three cameras in the pupil for optimal depth perception and peripheral vision and a mesh iris. The perception of the shrinking and dilating of the optic is caused by the movement of the camera lenses. Spacing them out for dilation, and pulling them closer together for shrinking. Despite popular belief, This doesn't naturally occur to adjust to light, because that is achieved within the cameras. It's rather a learned behavior from MAI observing their human partners' eyes doing such. On the other hand, dilation and shinking is semi-involuntary when showing emotion towards things, meaning that the optic will initially move accordingly, but the unit can still control it. This is what causes the rapid size change in the pupils when MAI look at certain people.
Along with the normal fuel intake on the side or top of the unit, LAI can also have a siphon at the base of their vessel for intake. It's primarily for water, but can work with any other fuel the unit is compatible with. The siphon has the main tube, a group of medium tubes, and another group of small tubes. This was particularly useful during war time in dryer areas, where deeper bodies of water may have been hard to come by. Is the water source too shallow to work with the main siphon? only use the medium tubes. Still too shallow? Use the small tubes. The smallest tubes are able to siphon from at least an inch of water, which may sound impractical, but during these times, having as much fuel as possible was always ideal; even if you couldn't get much at a time. On the off chance that the siphon gets clogged, there is a separate air intake that the unit can use to push out the obstruction.