The robotics industry is worth billions of pounds worldwide. Robots have been hugely successful in a plethora of industries. The manufacturing industry for example is rife with robotics – from cars and planes to tins of beans, most modern factories utilise some robotic devices. Robots are widely used in the medical world where they are specifically designed and programmed to perform operations where precision is essential. There are robotic machines which clean, serve, build, destroy – all to the whim of the human mind.
Robotics have revolutionised the world we live in. The mining industry, for example was once heavily reliant on a human workforce with an extremely dangerous working environment leading to many deaths. Now, robots are used to drill, and collate information about the mine’s interior, enabling a safer environment for any human miners.
Military robotics is a contentious area which has sparked much public debate. The development of military drones can be viewed in a positive way as it removes any danger to human life when conducting reconnaissance, vital aid supply, surveillance, and assistance in war torn areas. Drones and remote activated missiles, however, are often viewed negatively as they can be seen to remove responsibility from a nation at war by distancing the act of destruction and indiscriminately causing death.
So what about the most inherent human desire – sex? Sex is, after all, what humans are pre-programmed to do. Without sexual desire, the human race would soon face extinction. When you consider the average human’s appetite for sex, the invention of sex robots was perhaps inevitable. Well, the sex robots have arrived and they are already looking like a good long term financial investment. Business man David Levy suggests that by the middle of this century, sex robots will be widely used and actually be beneficial to our society.
As Artificial Intelligence and Robotics moves on at what point do we let robots into our lives?
Written by Steve Preston, Managing Director of Heat Recruitment
As we continuously strive to advance the capabilities of robots, enhancing their designs, it poses the question of how far will we literally go in the world of robotics?
At present robots are used in an array of functions in the construction industry, cleaning, firefighting, the military, manufacturing and many more areas; all the way to more household functions such as pet robots created for entertainment, hobbies and recreation. Additionally, robots are being deployed in the subtle areas of nursing care, surgery, therapy, rehabilitation and to keep people company reducing the feeling of loneliness. So at what point will the Artificial Intelligence (AI) be at an in depth level to create intimate Human and Robot relationships.
Will a human ever marry a robot?
As crazy as it may seem, with the speed of development it could happen. As they say ‘many a true word is spoken in jest’.
Now there is a long way to go with the advancement of robotics, however, as emotional capability is being developed at a rapid rate and the aesthetics and textiles of robots is evolving ever more, we need to give consideration to the implications of when someone does request to marry a robot. Morally how will we deal with this? It would be estimated that robots will be living with us as house-bots, dealing with the day-to-day household chores long before consideration is given to what I call a Hume-Bot relationship, however, it is not to say it won’t happen.
After all, 35 years ago some people thought that same-sex marriage was unlikely and would never happen, and yet it was only three years ago that the legislation to allow same-sex marriage in England and Wales was passed by the Parliament of the United Kingdom, with the first same-sex marriages taking place on 29 March 2014.
We could also argue that with divorce rates being so high, one could ask ‘why not marry a robot, at least you can program it to behave and be what you are seeking within a relationship’. Hume-Bot marriages may seem outrageous in 2017 but what will be the opinion in 2042, 35 years from now?
Then there is the discussion to have about, will we need separate legislation surrounding the use and ownership of robots or will the government put a complete ban on sexual relationships between humans and machines. How would this be enforced? Will we ever see the day where a robot thinks for itself by learning from certain situations, as in the way that a human learns?
The world of robotics is exciting and developed correctly we can enhance the way that humans live on planet Earth, but we must be mindful that robotics and Artificial Intelligence is fraught with danger and many areas that need to have further clarity, rules and potential legislation. There are a lot of unknowns in the world of Artificial Intelligence and Robot development but what is known is that you can’t rule out Hume-Bot relationships, in the future.
What will Dinner Dates, First Dates and Come Dine with Me look like in the future? Who knows maybe your Valentine’s Day date in 2042 will be with a robot.