I like robots. There seems to be nothing in my profile that suggests this, and so I thought I would write about it.
I used to spend a lot of time dreaming about how robots would save humanity from hardship. In my dream they would do all of the farming and building for us, and so people would be free to live painless lives, and there would be plenty of resources for everyone. So fast forward to now... and that kinda came true, except it is not the same as I imagined it. Today's robot is more like "a machine", and not at all like the sci-fi fantasies we used to have. But still, good enough in purposes of saving people from a ton of daily burden!
Now I think this dream is still in process, and maybe just a bit further into the future we will see the types of robots I used to dream of, which obviously stem from the sci-fi universe. But what about the part of the dream that states "all people will be relieved from hardship and there will be resources for everyone." This is the tricky part. The older and wiser a person gets, the more they might come to find that this is a bit idealistic. So, although I will still keep this dream in my heart as a beautiful dream, I have to concede that it might not be very realistic. But... I am still optimistic and excited to see what comes next. So far we have been on an amazing upward trend, and so I don't see any reason for things to suddenly go bad.
But more on robots. That was only the beginning. I also loved the Transformers when I was a kid. I had the old, original, heavy, metallic Transformers toys and they were awesome. I loved the cartoons too. I loved the whole idea that there could be a world full of living machines. And how interesting is it that even machines could develop personalities, politics, war and peace, and even some very deep and meaningful, almost religious, ways about them. That really brings a new perspective on life!
Then there was a game I played. I can't remember the name of it, and it was a horrible game that constantly crashed, but I would play the first 10 minutes of it over and over just because I loved it. The game was basically a strategy game, like Starcraft, but it was based on robot factories which made robots instead of soldiers, and they were on a planet far away from Earth. The planet was dessert-life and I thought it was interesting how robots could continue to work on this planet without needing oxygen. It is like adding life to a lifeless planet, and it shows that the boundaries of life go beyond what we expect in nature. If I recall correctly, there was something of a story line to this game which suggested that the robots were made by humans, but it was so many years into the future, and deep into outer space, and the humans has died off but the robots kept living. This concept also fascinates me. If such machine could be designed, and if they could be given AI to "self improve"... how far would they go and what would they do?
I also read "I, Robot" by Asimov many years back and that has a great story about the "ethics and morals" which a robot should have to live among humans in society. There is a movie for this now, so I won't spoil it for you.
Then there was the Matrix. The same philosophies as above, but building upon it even more now with many different angles. Is it technology helping humanity? Or technology waging war against humanity?
In the end of all this type of thought it gets a bit deep and philosophical, and that's really interesting too. But I don't want to forget that "Robots are just cool". Like the Jetson's maid robot. Star Wars' 3CPO and R2D2. The Transformers. Etc. Etc. It just seems like fun to have such technology available.
But we still need nature too. So maybe it's time to draw some illustrations of robots in nature. The juxtaposition of life and artificial-life.