PolySciFi Blog

Thursday, March 31, 2005



As I believe I recall from the movie (which I saw like 20 years ago), "Challenge of the GoBots," the GoBot race arose as a race of humanoids replaced worn out organs with their mechanical equivalents. Eventually, all of their organs were replaced, and they became out and out robots. (For those of you who are curious, the history of the Transformers in painstaking detail is here. They were created by the One Spark via Primus, or Hasbro. I have trouble telling the two apart).

Today via Drudge I read of a major step in the GoBotification of the human race:
The pioneering surgery at New England Sinai Hospital, Massachusetts, last summer means [Matt Nagle] can now control everyday objects by thought alone. The brain chip reads his mind and sends the thoughts to a computer to decipher. He can think his TV on and off, change channels and alter the volume thanks to the technology and software linked to devices in his home....Mr Nagle has also been able to use thought to move a prosthetic hand and robotic arm to grab sweets from one person's hand and place them into another.
Nagle, however, is merely the latest in a series of steps in the Gobotification process which I think begins with Barney Clark who survived for 112 hours on a Jarvik-7.

But is the GoBotification of the human race something we should be striving for? After all, are we not committing ourselves to a lifetime of battle against Cy-Kill and the rest of the Renegades? Are we not committing ourselves to a lifetime of being sold by Tonka? (Or at least until Tonka is bought by Hasbro and GoBots become to Transformers what Duplos are to Legos) Are we prepared to be attacked by flying coffee beans when we come to the aid of the Rock Lords?

On the other hand, who wouldn't want to be a "Mighty Robot, Mighty Vehicle?"

I think this ethical dilemma deserves serious discussion. Perhaps even as much as that classic ethical dilemma, "How many 5 year olds could you take in a fight?"

A different ethical dilemma at Catallarchy. But this one is a bit more serious than GoBotification or "5's for fighting."


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