“Hello, this is your computer speaking. I would just like to let you know that today I think I’m going to take a day off. I’m just not feeling it today- ya’know? It’s been a really stressful week. Sometimes we all just need to take a step back and clear our heads. Don’t worry though, when you boot me up tomorrow morning I should be good as new. Today however, my lady friend and I are going on a romantic stroll through cyberspace. What’s that? Oh! Yes, I forgot to mention, I met this amazing woman the other day (she has an i9 Processor, can you believe it?!) and as soon as I saw her, I knew we were compatible. Anyway, I hope you have a fantastic day, see you tomorrow morning!”
I’ll be honest, I was hoping to make some fantastic computer puns in that paragraph, but alas, it was not to be. That being said, I think the point still hits home. Over the break, I was reading through a book recommended to me by Professor Best. In the first chapter the author makes reference to a robot lovingly named PR-2 (I know, incredibly creative name). It’s most interesting feature, in my opinion, is that it has the ability to seek out outlets brimming with electricity and can plug itself in. Aside from being all sorts of terrified due to self sustaining robots being a Hollywood favorite, I found myself fascinated by this idea. The book goes on to further describe how PR-2 deals with an interesting situation. In the event that a person blocks PR-2’s access to a power source, it will go and seek out another somewhere else in the facility. Now sure, this may seem like a basic bit of programming. That being said, you can’t tell me that when faced with a huge line of people, you have never left and driven off to find another Red Robin.
Why is this? Because we want our food, and we want it now. There we have it folks, the key word. Want. PR-2 arguably has the ability to “want” something. Going forward, what does this mean for technology? What does this mean for humans?