We've been celebrating National Robotics Week, April 4-12, with articles about the latest robot technology, a radio show about the value of social robots, protests against robots and why they are silly, truly evil robots, and a general celebration of what robots can do.
At the heart of all those articles is a simple question -- will robots help our lives or ruin them?
Some people are worried about robots taking their jobs. Some are worried about them enslaving us or making us pets. Some think they are expensive pieces of technology that aren't giving us any ROI. Others see a utopian future where people are freed from dangerous and mindless tasks.
I say let's go with it. Let's welcome the new robot masters. No matter what happens, it'll be an adventure. And who says humans are all that great to begin with? We pollute the planet, destroy natural resources, hurt each other, and create chaos on an otherwise fairly orderly planet. Maybe robots can clean up our messes, like Wall-E did, but before we actually have to leave the planet for it to happen.
There's no reason to assume robots would do any worse running the planet than people have. So I present to you:
Ten Reasons Robots Should Rule The World
1. You don't really like your job anyway. Only 13% of people in the whole world really feel engaged in their job. So what's the big deal if robots take those jobs over?
2. Your cat has it pretty good. Your cat sleeps 20 hours a day. He or she wakes up to eat and get scratched behind the ears. If robots keep us as pets, it doesn't sound like such a bad life.
3. We make lousy slaves. Remember, robots can go 24 hours, working tirelessly. They don't need food and can learn to fix themselves. What do they really need humans as slaves for? Are they really going to sit around and watch us work? Are they going to enslave a bunch of us to make food they don't eat just so we can survive to be slaves?
4. We could relive the plot of Mr. Roboto. Admit it, you've always wanted to dress as a robot and lead a revolution. You heart is human. You blood is boiling. You brain is IBM.
5. Robot TV is pretty good. Remember Small Wonder? (A TV show about a girl robot.) "She's a small wonder. She's fantastic! Made of Plastic! With microchips here and there. She brings love and laughter everywhere!" That's what I'd expect all robot TV to be like when robots take over.
6. If we're lucky, they might just evict us. Maybe instead of killing us, they just design a spaceship and kick us off the earth. We get to start over by ruining a whole new planet.
7. Running the earth is hard. Let someone else do it. Why stress ourselves? Robots are good at juggling lots of problems. They can handle global warming and what's for dinner at the same time. Most of us can't do more than order out and recycle the containers.
8. It was a nice run. Humans have been around 150,000 to 200,000 years, give or take. That's pretty good. Who says another 150,000 is a good idea anyway?
9. No more telemarketers. Robots won't try to sell you anything.
10. The only difference between a robot and your current boss is that robots know what they're doing. Seriously, you call your own bosses slave drivers with no personality. They can't take a joke. They work you forever. They don't know what they're doing. At least a robot knows its job.
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