The Robot In Your Bed

For years sci-fi writers have been weaving fantastical tales about robots in our world. For good or for ill. But now it’s official, sci-fi aficianodes, because the New York Times says so. Right there on their recent front pages. However, here’s what bothers me. The developers are talking about an advanced robot “that will be more like us.”

What???

If I were in charge, I think I’d want to make these advanced robots less like us…! You know, less inclined to greed and warfare and all-round nastiness. With all due respect to the process we call Evolution [self-started or God started, take your choice], Evolution has taken millions of years to get our eyes and hands and feet to become as remarkable as they are. But please, please, it’s our nature not our appendages that need improvement.

Seems to me that Evolution and/or God has sent us prophetic spokesmen on that very subject century after century. Great spiritual voices to advise our wretched human nature how to better itself. But have we listened? Hell no! And so it is what we really need in any advanced robots are not better parts, but please please better natures. Better values and visions by which to function.

Unfortunately, there’s a hook. If we follow Evolution’s terribly slow time table, chances that our nature will improve are unlikely for another few million years. So to the editors of the New York Times let me sadly say this…

….your reports don’t impress me all that much. Now if, on the other hand, you could report the robotiers are working on our nature as well as our parts, then I’d be impressed. And ever so grateful.

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