and, as Wikipedia notes (HERE), built "a series of space opera science fiction short stories and novels in which robotic self-replicating machines strive to destroy all life"—stories like this one, which features a couple of famous characters you might recognize . . .
By Fred Saberhagen (1930-2007).
First appearance: Omni, January 1980 as "Adventure of the Metal Murderer."
Reprinted many times since (HERE).
Short short story (5 pages).
Online at Baen Books (HERE: HTML).
"The temple of Earth's safety had been horribly profaned."If you bear in mind the story's locale ("within one hundred kilometers of fifty-one degrees, eleven minutes north latitude; zero degrees, seven minutes west longitude"), you might be able to anticipate some of what's about to happen—but probably not all of it . . .
- The late Fred Saberhagen and his Berserker Saga were and still are quite popular; for plenty of information about them both see Wikipedia (HERE), the SFE (HERE), the ISFDb (HERE), and a homepage (HERE).
HERE) and (HERE).