I. Am. A. Robot. (For today.)
|Here's my initial sketch|
This idea started germinating when I came across several silver accessories/materials within a short time and my brain interpreted this as robot ingredients.
The supplies (as usual) came to me in various ways:
· Silver plastic icicles for skirt (from Goodwill) $2
· Silver pleather (left over from another project)
· Black pleather (left over from another project)
· Assorted gizmos and gadgets (found)
· Gray fabric (from stash)
· Silver paint and hot glue (from craft stash)
Total cost $2
Robots are intriguing to me for this reason: they are a compelling mix of machine and human. I am guessing that the people who design robots want them to be efficient like machines but somewhat human--but no so human that they make mistakes. Robots don’t tire out, like humans do. Robots do not require food, water, rest, sick days or have any of the myriad needs humans do. But as usual, we want it all. We want robots to be efficient machines who are somewhat human—but not too human! We’d like them to have the best parts of human nature (to be caring, loyal and funny) but not the worst parts. Talk about high expectations. Could a robot hug you when you’re crying? Probably. But would it understand why you’re crying? No. And for me, that’s not enough! You can program a robot to react, but not to feel. And a key part of being human is the ability to feel emotion.
And don’t get me started on the robot who answers when I call my insurance company. Sure, the robot understands if you say you’re calling about a claim, but inevitably there’s some misunderstanding and after you’ve repeated yourself three times she says “I’m sorry. I still didn’t get that.” I understand that it makes sense for machines to do some types of work. But there are limits, I’d say.
This whole theme started with a few silver accessories and now I’m pondering machines vs humans. But it seems this topic has a lot of appeal to people. Think about how many movies feature humans fighting machines for control of the universe. Or a robot befriending a person who needs a buddy. This robot thing has endless potential…
Today’s costume included an element of social experimentation in that I spoke in my robot voice for most of the day. I’d say 50% of those I spoke to loved it and spoke back to me in robot, but the other 50% were either confused or too shy to speak robot, even when I encouraged them to. But hey, that’s okay. Once upon a time I was very shy, so I sympathize with shy people. Still, it was very satisfying for me when people did speak back in robot. It’s fun to talk that way. (Go ahead. Try it right now. No one’s watching.) It got people laughing. And that’s good.Anyway, thanks for reading this week’s stream of consciousness, Robots: the good, the bad, and the rusty. Here's a short video of me in robot mode. See. You. Next. Week.