Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Robots: friend or foe?

The previous post, "Moon" by Drew, got me thinking: are robots good or bad in contemporary science fiction? Are the technological intelligences we create our helpers and companions, or are they usurpers looking to exist beyond the control of their creators. I mean, we have plenty of examples so far: GERTY, the chimp, the naked brains (to an extent), the room in "Going Deep" and so on. So what do we think? Is science fiction today more of a Matrix/Terminator world where the robots quite literally wage war on humanity? Is it moving towards or away from this? Any thoughts or other current examples?

1 comment:

salsa said...

I think it depends on the needs of the story and the tech level you're working with. In "Going Deep" and Moon the level of AI technology is comparable to our own. They tend to be rather benign even if slightly creepy.

With 2001: A Space Odyssey, "Zeppelin City," and "The Island" the AI are more advanced and tend to either develop their own agendas or turn sadistic in the execution of their overlord's agenda.

I know I must sound like a broken record, but one of the things I love about Schlock Mercenary is how the AI's are handled. Yes they display human tendencies, but we see the gamut of hobbled AI's that barely have a sense of self to megalomaniacs that topple anarchies and set up "Robo-dictatorships," as it was said in comic.