The White House is not in the business of blowing up planets. This policy is clarified in an official statement explaining that it will not cave to a “We the People” petition calling for the federal government to build a battle-ready spaceship modeled after the Star Wars Death Star. (Among the reasons: the $850,000,000,000,000,000 cost and an ideological stance against interplanetary destruction.) While most are getting a good laugh from the petition, which was signed by nearly 35,000 people, it wouldn’t be crazy to bet that someone at the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) seriously considered it. After all, the Department of Defense agency is developing tiny hummingbird robot spies, virtual-reality contact lenses, and a slew of other projects seemingly lifted straight of a sci-fi novel. Here are a few unclassified endeavors.