Robots

Hi, Robot

How science fiction androids became real-life machines.

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Before there were robots in real life, there were robots in science fiction. Many decades' worth of robots. Unsurprisingly, those works of imaginative fiction led directly to the reality we live in today.

The idea of humanoid automatons goes back centuries—historian Noel Sharkey has found evidence of robot-like designs in ancient Greece-but the word robot is less than 100 years old. It was first used by the Czech writer Karel Capek in a 1920 play called R.U.R., which tells the story of a revolt at Rossum's Universal Robots, a factory that produces humanoid machines. (Capek's robots were biological creations, more like androids than metal men.)

The word robot was drawn from robota, a Czech word meaning drudge work. Capek's story set the tone for decades of robot fiction, mostly by stoking fears that the servants could eventually turn on their masters. Such scenarios were on Isaac Asimov's mind in 1939 when he wrote "Robbie," the first of what would be dozens of influential stories about future societies populated by robots.

In the introduction to The Complete Robot, a 1982 compendium of his robot tales, Asimov explains that as a sci-fi-reading teenager, he found that the stories tended to fit largely into one of two categories: Robot as Menace, which essentially reworked the Frankenstein myth of the rebellious creation; or Robot as Pathos, which imagined them as lovable companions, often abused by human overseers. Asimov's first robot story was intended to take the Pathos route, but he quickly found himself with a rather different notion.

"I began to think of robots as industrial products by matter of fact engineers," he wrote. "They were built with safety features so they weren't Menaces and they were fashioned for certain jobs so that no Pathos was necessarily involved."

No science fiction author contributed more to the way that science fiction imagined robots, and none were as influential on the field of robotics itself, as Asimov. Indeed, Asimov coined the word robotics in his 1941 short story "Liar!," about a robot that unexpectedly develops telepathic powers.

Asimov by then had already dreamed up an ethics code that would guide his writing, shape the broader popular debate, and even inspire industrial designs for decades to come. The Three Laws of Robotics were the basic operating system for Asimov's go-to fictional robotics firm, U.S. Robots and Mechanical Men. The first law prevented robots from harming humans either by action or inaction; the second law ordered robots to obey human commands so long as they did not conflict with the first law; the third law required robots to protect themselves, so long as there was no conflict with the first two laws. Many of Asimov's stories were investigations into aberrant robot behavior produced by the laws' loopholes and contradictions when exposed to unusual circumstances.

Asimov, an outspoken rationalist and science popularizer, was attracted to the way that robots were creations bound by logic, consistency, and rules. They were also moral creations: tools and helpers, friends and companions, to be celebrated and used rather than restricted and feared.

Isaac Asimov signing books.
Associated Press

"Robbie" tells the tale of a young girl's fascination with one such robot companion. Her parents send the robot away because her mother finds the attachment to an artificial friend unseemly and unnatural; the parents spend the rest of the story attempting to convince their daughter to get over her obsession with her lost pal.

In the end, the two are reunited, the robot saves the young girl's life—Asimov's First Law in action—and the parents give in. It's a parable about human attachment to robots, the absurdity of social stigmas on technology, and the inevitability of productive partnerships between human beings and their creations.

Asimov's Three Laws became permanent fixtures of debates about robot ethics, spawning countless books and articles. And while intelligent humanoid robots didn't become the common household appliances he foresaw, his factory-built robots sure did.

Many early industrial robots were designed and built by Unimation, a firm co-founded by the physicist/entrepreneur Joseph Engelberger, commonly known as the Father of Robotics. Under Engelberger, Unimation created the very first industrial robot, a mechanized assembly line arm called the Unimate, which was placed in a General Motors factory in 1961. By the late 1970s, the company was producing as much as one-third of all industrial factory-line robots.

Engelberger, who received a doctorate from Columbia a year after Asimov received his, explicitly credited his fascination with the subject to Asimov. The industrialist was enamored enough of the science fiction writer that he asked him to draft the forward to his 1980 book on robotics industry management practice and, a few years later, named his company's custom-built servant-bot "Isaac."

The Menace/Pathos dichotomy persists in the popular imagination today. On the one hand, robot helpers in homes and factories are an everyday reality for millions—building cars and computers, vacuuming homes, and giving us directions. On the other hand, popular culture is still packed with tales of robot takeovers. Two of 2015's most anticipated movies—Avengers: Age of Ultron and Terminator: Genisys—feature powerful intelligent robots determined to destroy their human creators.

Indeed, fears of the robot apocalypse are pervasive enough that in 2008 a team of researchers from Washington University in St. Louis held a conference workshop on how science fiction influences perceptions and interactions with robots.

"It's surprising how often people make nervous jokes about robots taking over the world," roboticist Bill Smart told New Scientist at the time. "Most people have never seen a robot before. Their experiences—such as they are—all come from movies or literature."

There's research to back up this impression. As one team of media and technology academics from the University of Sussex argues in a 2013 paper on "The Mutual Influence of Science Fiction and Innovation," the relationship between technology and fiction is a kind of two-way exchange. Science fiction influences invention, which then influences science fiction, in an ever-evolving loop of creative ideas and practical refinement.

For Asimov, that give and take between science and fiction was a lifelong reality. Late in his life, he wrote about how astonished he was to see his science fantasies come true. In an introduction to the 1985 edition of the Handbook of Industrial Robotics, Asimov looked forward to a future in which the kind of friendly, productive partnership between humans and robots he had envisioned would become even more robust.

"I see robots growing incredibly more complex, versatile, and useful than they are now," he wrote. "I see them taking over all work that is too simple, too repetitive, too stultifying for the human brain to be subjected to. I see robots leaving human beings free to develop creativity, and I see humanity astonished at finding that almost everyone can be creative in one way or another."

Humans and robots, he predicted, would continue working together, "advancing far more rapidly than either could alone." It would be a future of beneficial mutual dependence, in other words—a relationship much like the one between the science fiction thinkers and scientific tinkerers who made robots a reality. In the end, maybe the robots will take over. But only because we let them.

NEXT: Did the challengers in King really ignore federalism? Their response

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    1. That’s definitely a DJ favorite.

      1. …at Bar Mitzvahs?

        that song annoyed me to death when it came out…and i was 9. i confess, I was a hard sell. I also liked Rush.

        1. You probably have a lot more experience with it than I do, but every mixed-age party I’ve ever been to had that song, plus some Bee Gees.

          For the record, it was on the “DO NOT PLAY” list at my wedding. So was U2’s “Beautiful Day”. We laughed in the DJ’s face when he suggested that.

          1. Bee Gees, “You Should Be Dancing” is like the most basic, lowest-common-denominator, play-anywhere-anytime DJ song of all time

            Well, almost.

            1. I’m fine with that in a mixed age crowd. It’s better than watching my Grandpa dance to “Lean like a Cholo”. It wasn’t pretty.

              1. You generally don’t mix in 2-live-crew when granny’s dancing with the groom. Rule of thumb. Unless Granny is a freak, that is.

                1. +1 face down ass up.

                  1. +1 face down ass up.

                    +1 dislocated artificial hip

        2. I remember when it came out. I was down in Boca Raton at my grandmother’s house and we would fire up the pool stereo when swimming. I swear this song was on every 15 minutes. I was also about 9 or so.

          1. The first song I remember being a big deal was “St. Elmos Fire”. I was maybe 5 or 6, and somebody had a boom box at the beach, and it came on at least 3 times an hour.

            1. The song is fine and catchy (thank you John Parr). The movie is gratingly dramatic and depressing. Joel Schumacher should have stuck to Lost Boys and Falling Down and spared us this and Batman.

              1. I have it on iTunes. I’ll probably play it at the beach today.

            2. Creepy Rob Lowe

        3. that song annoyed me to death when it came out

          Styx was a good band, back in the day, before they went Pop-y. Paradise Theater, while a good pop album, was the beginning of the end. I refuse to acknowledge the existence of the Robot thingy.

      2. I’ve made $64,000 so far this year working online and I’m a full time student. I’m using an online business opportunity I heard about and I’ve made such great money. It’s really user friendly and I’m just so happy that I found out about it. Heres what I’ve been doing,
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        1. Domo arigato, Mr. Anon-boto

    2. My last pay check was $9500 working 12 hours a week online. My sisters friend has been averaging 15k for months now and she works about 20 hours a week. I can’t believe how easy it was once I tried it out. This is what I do
      http://www.work-mill.com

  1. I’m okay with all robots except the stop motion ones. Those frighten me and if engineers start creating stop motion robots there will be war, mark my words. Also, robosexuals.

    1. robosexuals

      Chris Morris, describing the potential for a dystopian future where otherwise-crippled pedophiles acquire robotic exoskeletons=

      Your children could very soon be splatted by a roboplegic wrongcock

      1. Person-bot marriage, next frontier of marriage equality!

        Eddie hardest hit.

        1. Person-bot marriage, next frontier of marriage equality!

          Absolutely, this is protected under the 14th amendment. It is quite obvious that this was clearly what was intented when the amendment was enacted.

          1. No no, the living constitution would only cover living androids, not undead robots.

      2. I don’t think states are likely to extend officiating powers to robots for some time. It would probably have to be some informal ceremony, like letting your 5 year old sister handle the honors.

      3. No, they’re just an accumulation of parts and it’s possible to establish a point where they are robots . . . (just messin’ with you.)

        1. *impossible*

      4. Can robots ethically have abortions?

  2. Star Trek: First Contact is the only example I can think of where the trope is turned on its head.

    We are used to seeing Data as an android. But as we see the Borg graft skin to his body, we grow more and more uneasy. Until finally, we see that half of his face is now covered in skin.

    For a brief second there, I actually thought he had defected to the other side. Luckily, it was just a ruse.

    1. Also, Doctor McCoy’s prejudice against Spock can easily be scene as a manifestation of his technophobia.

      Vulcans are cold and logical, almost like robots. And McCoy is basically a robophobe.

      1. Dammit, Caleb. He’s a surgeon — not a robophile!

        1. Correction: Dammit, Caleb. I’m just a country doctor — not a robophile.

      2. Don’t be so sure of that. See the end of “Shore Leave”.

    2. That’s the thing that has always bugged me about Star Trek, no robots. They send down the command team with some expendable red shirts instead of sending down a robot first? C’mon.

      Of course in Star Wars they send humans in ships instead of a swarm of robotic missiles to fly down the vent.

      1. Warrior robots in the Star Wars ‘verse tend to be…goofy.

    3. But he thought about it for an eternity.

  3. Daneel Olivaw, the most complete robot in sci-fi history.

    Asimov wrote the biography of Daneel over at least 18 novels covering 35,000 years!

    I’ve read them all at least 3 times and will again.

    Thanks for the article!

    1. I had no idea Asimov lived that long.

      1. Lived? Keep your tense-ism to yourself.

        1. As another scifi writer said:

          The most important thing I learned on Tralfamadore was that when a person dies he only appears to die. He is still very much alive in the past, so it is very silly for people to cry at his funeral. All moments, past, present and future, always have existed, always will exist. The Tralfamadorians can look at all the different moments just that way we can look at a stretch of the Rocky Mountains, for instance. They can see how permanent all the moments are, and they can look at any moment that interests them. It is just an illusion we have here on Earth that one moment follows another one, like beads on a string, and that once a moment is gone it is gone forever.

          When a Tralfamadorian sees a corpse, all he thinks is that the dead person is in a bad condition in that particular moment, but that the same person is just fine in plenty of other moments. Now, when I myself hear that somebody is dead, I simply shrug and say what the Tralfamadorians say about dead people, which is “so it goes.

  4. In Robocop 2, Robocop tells Murphy’s wife that “They made this [his face] to honor him.”

    So, is Robocop’s face a simulation of Murphy’s face or is it actually Murphy’s face, grafted onto Robocop’s body?

    I always assumed that OCP had saved Murphy’s face and brain and incorporated it into the Robocop structure. But Robocop 2 makes it seem like only Murphy’s brain survived.

    Also, since Murphy suffered a headshot, there’s only so much of Murphy’s brain that could still be used in the Robocop body. So how much of Murphy is still there?

  5. Bite my shiny metal ass.

    1. Bender, stop trying to destroy the world.

      1. Funderful? Antiquing?

        (BOOM)

  6. This is a complete nerd thread, and none of you west coast nerds posted that it was Pi time?

    I am disappoint.

    1. I do not acknowledge the existence of irrational numbers.

    2. You’ve posted more in this nerd thread than anyone else…NERD!

      DORK ALERT

      1. You’re just mad that you were getting baked and it caused you to miss Pi time.

        1. I got (re)baked around…6AM? It’s totally worn off. Now I’m in coffee and eggs and bacon mode. Soon, leftover cassoulet.

          1. I just had the worst omelet of my life. Couldn’t even finish half of it. I guess that’s a good thing, today is a beach then pool day. I won’t be bloated, and I have room for morning cocktails now.

            1. That’ll teach you to eat omelets from your mom.

              1. Wife. I let my wife near the stove.

                1. (shakes head)

                  What were you thinking?

            2. “I just had the worst omelet of my life”

              So it’s true – you *can* screw up an egg. i had heard otherwise.

              1. You can if you add too much of the wrong cheese.

                  1. WTF is wrong with you?

                    1. I don’t pay 5 figures in property tax?

                1. Oh, word to that.

                  Asiago. I am not a fan.

                  1. That was one of them. I keep about 10 different kinds of cheese in the deli drawer. I was expecting the mild marbled cheddar, which basically just adds fats and salt to the dish.

                    Instead, she accidentally used the “6 cheese Italian blend”, which has a shitload of asiago and parmesan. It’s great for a light dusting on top of a pizza, but absolutely disgusting with eggs.

        2. Everybody knows that Pi are round.

    3. Rational people celebrate it around 10:07PM.

    4. This is the first anniversary of my stepdad’s death. 🙁

    1. For you nerds who have not been keeping up, season six has been fantastic.

      1. Really? I stopped watching last season.

        1. Yes. Season six has been outstanding. Then again I post youtube links on here so what the fuck do I know?

  7. Why is there an unflattering picture of Billy Bob Thorton accompanying this article? Are you suggesting Billy Bob isn’t human?

  8. I’ve made $64,000 so far this year working online and I’m a full time student. I’m using an online business opportunity I heard about and I’ve made such great money. It’s really user friendly and I’m just so happy that I found out about it. Heres what I’ve been doing,
    http://www.jobfinder247.com

  9. Reason is the only website on the internet with a commentariat nerdy enough that a history of Sci. Fi. robots classifies as clickbait.

    1. What’s a good day drink? Margaritas?

      http://www.accuweather.com/en/…..ast/337142

      1. You’re a monster.

        1. Nice. Did you get your banana hammock out of storage?

          1. Oh, I don’t put it in storage. Chicks dig my small package with my big belly hanging over it, so I go with the look year-round.

            1. It’s a shame you don’t live closer to your neighbors. You have a gift.

      2. It’s always a good time for beer.

        1. That’s poor etiquette at the pool. If I drink 12 beers and don’t get out to piss, people will know something is up.

    2. I’m changing the subject

  10. No fucking way!

    Last month?and particularly last week? Seattle foodies were downcast as the blows kept coming: Queen Anne’s Grub closed February 15. Pioneer Square’s Little Uncle shut down February 25. Shanik’s Meeru Dhalwala announced that it will close March 21. Ren?e Erickson’s Boat Street Caf? will shutter May 30 after 17 years with her at the helm (though, praise be, original owner Susan Kaplan will expand her neighboring Boat Street Kitchen into the space and continue serving the Boat Street pat?, the amaretto bread pudding with butter rum cream sauce and other favorites).

    How could this be happening?

    He estimates that a common budget breakdown among sustaining Seattle restaurants so far has been the following: 36 percent of funds are devoted to labor, 30 percent to food costs and 30 percent go to everything else (all other operational costs). The remaining 4 percent has been the profit margin, and as a result, in a $700,000 restaurant, he estimates that the average restauranteur in Seattle has been making $28,000 a year.

    With the minimum wage spike, however, he says that if restaurant owners made no changes, the labor cost in quick service restaurants would rise to 42 percent and in full service restaurants to 47 percent.

    Oops!

    1. Somehow this is the fault of the Republicans.

      1. My favorite part is that these poor restaurant owners have only been making 4% profit margin, so you’ve probably got shitloads of restaurant owners in Seattle making $30,000-$40,000 a year.

        Clearly these people were capitalist monsters who needed to give a higher percentage of their earnings to the proletariat, even though many of their workers probably weren’t making much less than the restaurant owner himself was.

        1. Considering the tiny amount of food they give you at Boat Street, I can’t see how their profit margin wasn’t higher. I have no pity for that place. Or any place where the owners voted for the wage hike, though in truth I doubt many, or possibly even any, did. Business realities trump retarded politics on the ground.

          It’s amazing how stupid some people are. Just…stunning.

        2. so you’ve probably got shitloads of restaurant owners in Seattle making $30,000-$40,000 a year.

          Split the difference. Call it 35,000

          Divide 35,000 by 50 to get weekly earnings, that’s 700. Divide by 40, we get 17.5 dollars per hour.

          Except really if you’re a restaurant owner we should be dividing by 52, because there ain’t no vacation. That gets us 673 a week. Divide that by 60, because the owner of a restaurant is going to work at least that many hours per week. That gets us 11.21 per hour.

          Why the hell wouldn’t you want to pay your newest, least experienced, and thus least valuable employee 3 dollars an hour more then you’re taking home yourself after you take all the risk and responsibility.

          1. Why the hell wouldn’t you want to pay your newest, least experienced, and thus least valuable employee 3 dollars an hour more then you’re taking home yourself after you take all the risk and responsibility.

            But…1%!!!

            Let’s be honest. The people who really voted for this shit are either mouth-breathing morons who think it’ll increase their (to use Charlie Kelly’s term) “government salary”/busboy wages, or are bitter, envious shitheels who hate anyone who they even think is making more money than them, no matter how hard that person worked. Welcome to voting, where the most hatefully motivated people are vastly more likely to be voting to fuck you than you and other like-minded non-hateful people are likely to vote. It’s a good system.

            1. “Throughout history, poverty is the normal condition of man. Advances which permit this norm to be exceeded ? here and there, now and then ? are the work of an extremely small minority, frequently despised, often condemned, and almost always opposed by all right-thinking people. Whenever this tiny minority is kept from creating, or (as sometimes happens) is driven out of a society, the people then slip back into abject poverty.

              This is known as “bad luck.”

      2. “this is the fault of the Republicans”

        Well, they refuse to repeal the laws of Supply and Demand, thus obstructioning the obvious path to Progtopia

    2. Or, it might just be that foodies are such a minority and normal folk don’t care to frequent such pretentious establishments.

    3. Whassa matter, the wreckers and kulaks couldn’t handle a couple of gold con reduction in the depth of their Scrooge Mcduck swimming pools?

    4. “How could this be happening?”

      I dunno! Who could have seen this coming?! If only a political/economic philosophy could predict such consequences to the restaurant industry, why, in this day and age they could — dare I say it — have a moment!

    5. Well, to be fair, no one could have seen this coming.

      Also, the rich are just trying to avoid paying their fair share so now they are going to go hoard their money.

    6. Doesn’t Seattle have a retarded POS commie on the city council who wanted to storm a Boeing plant and take it over so it could be used to manufacture city buses for free? Or was that some other proggie place?

      Nothing that comes out of that place surprises me. Get the hell out of there Epi, they are fucking that place into the ground at super sonic speed.

      1. There’s still plenty of money to be made. Luckily, economies are so complex that a few people can’t really wreck them that much. And it’s surprisingly easy, at least for me, to avoid these assholes’ bullshit.

      2. Luckily the roads are too narrow to accommodate the wings.

  11. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7VKdwx5AB5k

    “Reckless discharge of a gun”
    That’s what the officers are claimin’
    Bubba hollered out, “Reckless, hell
    I hit just where I was aiming”

    1. That’s kind of the most meaningless statistic I’ve ever seen. The most ‘disappointing’ appears to mean ‘below expert predictions.’ As a result, Europe has apparently been ‘surprisingly good’ even though Europe is in much worse shape than America, whereas America’s economy has been ‘disappointing’ even though it’s outperformed most of the economies above it on that list.

      So the list could just be called ‘prognosticators are morons,’ but that wouldn’t make as good a headline.

      1. I am disappointed in your response. I predicted it would be more positive

    2. I see two words in the title and subtitle. Surprise, and unanticipated.

      I guess the US economy and the Seattle restaurant business have been hit by a run of bad luck. Why even our own president, the smartest man who ever lived, said that very thing.

  12. That’s cool. I didn’t know robot(a) was a Czech word.

    Cyfuse and Cyberdyne Are Pushing the Boundaries of 3D Printed Human Engineering With Regenova

    Imagine, if you will, a powerful robotic-limbed appliance with a human inside wrapped in 3D printed and cultured protective tissue. It’s capable of lifting enormous loads, and the human operator within can be repaired using the latest in bioprinting technology and materials.
    …..

    Cyfuse is the developer of Regenova, a robotic-controlled 3D printer they created with Shibuya Kogyo. The device turns living cell aggregates into artificial human tissue, and both companies say the tissue cultures will soon be used to test new products ? and might eventually be used to construct human organs from an individual’s own stem cells.
    ….

    The company has, to this point, raised a total $16.5 million with it’s system which can print cartilage and subchondral bone, tubular tissues such as blood vessels, digestive and urinary organs and even miniature livers.

    I’m thinking fleshy robots…

    1. “Early in the 21st Century, THE TYRELL CORPORATION advanced robot evolution into the NEXUS phase – a being virtually identical to a human – known as a Replicant. The NEXUS 6 Replicants were superior in strength and agility, and at least equal in intelligence, to the genetic engineers who created them. Replicants were used Off-World as slave labor, in the hazardous exploration and colonization of other planets. After a bloody mutiny by a NEXUS 6 combat team in an Off-World colony, Replicants were declared illegal on earth – under penalty of death. Special police squads – BLADE RUNNER UNITS – had orders to shoot to kill, upon detection, any trespassing Replicant This was not called execution. It was called retirement.”

      1. I want more life, fucker.

    2. Holy SHIT, Pretenders are real.

  13. OT: http://welcometotwinpeaks.com/…..lications/

    Apparently, casting negotiations for Twin Peaks: Season 3 have hit a bit of a snag. I know Maclachlan was interested in the project. His is probably the biggest salary on the show.

    Don’t be cheap, Showtime. If this gets made, it will make a lot of money.

  14. Greek Econo-Dude Drops Black Sabbath-Level Irony =

    EU: Your Wasteful Spending On QE is ‘Unsustainable’;
    wouldn’t it make *much* more sense to blow that money on Greek public-sector parasites?

  15. ” I see robots leaving human beings free ”

    In fact those Americans who do have jobs are working longer. And when they are not at work, they are still tied with cell phones, email and the like. Who would have predicted that automation freed us not to create more, but to work more?

    1. People *choose* to work longer.

      because they want the material things that come from that labor.

      Shocker.

      1. “People *choose* to work longer.”

        That’s basically what I meant. Automation has freed us to create more, but we choose to work more instead. The more automation, the more material things, the more work we choose to do to get them. The only shocker is that this freedom to create nonsense is still bandied about and swallowed by so many without question.

        1. apparently “work” and “creation” are now mutually exclusive activities.

          I’ve heard similar stupidity from people glorifying the ‘creation’ inherent in Agricultural drudgery, while bemoaning the slavery of corporate Advertising Executives, who ‘create nothing’, apparently.

          1. “apparently “work” and “creation” are now mutually exclusive activities.”

            That’s basically the upshot of the Asimov quote near the end. Robots will take over work, especially drudge work, leaving people to develop their creative capacities. I am only pointing out that it hasn’t happened that way. Not only do people work more than they did before robots, I very much doubt they’ve become any more creative. If you think Asimov was on the nose when he wrote that, don’t be afraid to openly agree with him just because I questioned the quote.

            1. ‘ I very much doubt they’ve become any more creative”

              Based on what example? Your own inability to use the English language to communicate basic concepts?

              You seem to have started with a conclusion and now run around looking for an argument to support it. You’ve got nothing. Its presumption, all the way down.

              1. “Based on what example? ”

                Based on absense of evidence to the contrary. Ever heard of Occam’s Razor?

                “Your own inability to use the English language to communicate basic concepts?”

                If you don’t understand, and you aren’t alone, don’t be shy about asking.

                “You seem to have started with a conclusion ”

                I haven’t reached any conclusion. I’m simply expressing skepticism about Asimov’s quote. Apologies if this hurts your feelings. I appear to have struck a nerve.

        2. That’s basically what I meant. Automation has freed us to create more, but we choose to work more instead.

          Except I already proved people don’t work more. Also, I don’t know how you can ‘create’ without working. Creation is work.

          The more automation, the more material things, the more work we choose to do to get them. The only shocker is that this freedom to create nonsense is still bandied about and swallowed by so many without question.

          I don’t even know what you’re talking about, but I imagine it sounded very pretty in your head.

          1. “I don’t even know what you’re talking about”

            Yes, words are so confusing. You better stick to proving people don’t work more. One thing at a time.

    2. Except that since 1965, American leisure time has increased an average of 6.9 hours per week.

      So every year you have 360 extra hours of leisure time, which comes out to about 15 days a year.

      Oops! Every time you post here you seem to get all verifiable facts wrong. It’s actually impressive.

      1. Isn’t sub-genius an admitted liar? As in, he’s explicitly stated that he will lie to further an agenda/argument?

        1. I think you only call them “lies” because you have not yourself ‘transcended logic’

          1. You’re right, it’s a poverty of vocabulary that leads many of the dullards here to bang on about lies.

            What I post here is often a mixture or sincerity and irony. I leave it to the reader’s imagination to sort out which is which, a challenge that clearly surpasses the abilities of some readers who dismiss everything I write as a lie, however implausible that may seem.

            1. You’re literally too stupid not to laugh at.

              HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

              Keep ’em comin’, ace!

              1. “HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA”

                ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ… (even longer)

            2. You’re right, it’s a poverty of vocabulary that leads many of the dullards here to bang on about lies.

              What I post here is often a mixture or sincerity and irony. I leave it to the reader’s imagination to sort out which is which, a challenge that clearly surpasses the abilities of some readers who dismiss everything I write as a lie, however implausible that may seem.

              You write like Agile Cyborg but lack his charm. Also, I don’t think you’re high, so you also lack his primary excuse.

              Here’s a hint: If it is impossible to parse the nonsense you’re writing, it’s more likely that your thought process is incoherent than that the entire rest of the world is filled with ‘dullards.’

              1. “it is impossible to parse the nonsense you’re writing”

                Thanks for the compliment. I’ve always been a lover of nonsense. At least one commenter gets the difference between nonsense and lies. And don’t give up on trying to parse my comments. Main thing though, is that you continue to read and enjoy them. That’s all I ask.

        2. Yes, he did. Rather than try and figure out when he is lying and when he is not I simply discount every single thing he says.

          1. Amazing how that works, isn’t it? Yes sub-genius and his fellow travelers will listen to politicians’ lies all day and never check or care if they do what they say.

        3. Why do you call him ‘sub-genius?’ Is there a hilarious story about mtrueman saying something stupid that I am not aware of?

          1. Its an insult to actual subgenii

            praise bob

          2. I believe Sevo has actually had a discussion with him where he freely admitted that he will absolutely and blatantly lie in an argument if he feels it “furthers the cause” or some shit. I’m impressed at the towering intellect that would admit that. It’s strategic genius, you see?

            1. “trueman”

            2. My favorite part is his blog where he claims that the Luddites actually loved technology and for some reason people who hack into their smart phones are the new Luddites because reasons.

              I’m sure there are people who explicitly identify these hackers with the Luddites of old, but they seem to be extremely rare. Yet the Luddites of old and the hackers share the same motives: keeping the control of technology from slipping into the hands of others.

              Quite so.

              1. Wow that is some true derp.

              2. Many people these days use the term Luddite to mean a hatred or fear of technology. The original Luddites did not fear or hate technology. They were craftsmen who were technologically adept, probably more than those who were not craftsmen and made and maintained their own equipment. Whatever else that is, it isn’t hatred and fear of technology.

                The similarity between the Luddites of old and the modern hackers is their insistence on maintaining control over the technology they use. Those who are happy to let others control the technologies they use are neither Luddites nor hackers.

        4. “Isn’t sub-genius an admitted liar? ”

          Of course the sub-genius is an admitted liar. Who hasn’t lied?

      2. ” American leisure time”

        What the hell is American leisure time?

        1. what you’re doing right now. narcissistic wankery.

        2. Going to the liquor store.

          1. I just got back. I haven’t had any for over a week and it is saturday….so…..mixing one up now.

            1. Ditto. Rum punch. And then it’s time to toss my kids around the pool.

  16. I’ve been wondering who stole my sideburns.

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