Sex robots are coming!
You know how they say that porn is responsible for the amazing growth of the internet in the 90’s? The sex industry tends to drive a lot of trends and technology, and I guess robotics isn’t going to be an exception to that rule! Case in point: sex robots.
It turns out that companies are racing to have the first fully functional sex robots on the market, with prototypes expected as early as 2017. In fact, a fellow in China has already built one. Ricky Ma built “Mark 1”, modelled after an unnamed Hollywood star, spending about $51,000 and just over a year and a half to create and program the sex robot. Ma isn’t a robotics expert or anything, he’s just an enthusiast, and, it would seem, rather horny.
Kinky sex robots?
While I was reading about this amazing advance in technology, a few things came to mind. Could it be taught how to throw a whip? Would it be as much fun to hit as a willing bottom? Of course, these questions lead to questions about ethics.
Ethics, or should we worry about the Terminator
How self-aware are these sex robots? I mean, if it’s just a machine, consent doesn’t really matter. I don’t ask my microwave if it’s ok to heat up food or do regular check-ins with my computer when I’m binge watching Tokyo Ghoul (don’t judge!).
Of course, as artificial intelligence gets better and better, we will have to look at the ethical ramifications of having sex with robots, among other things. At what point will we cross the line between computers that are just really good and ones that are self-aware? Should we start being nicer to robots, to ward off a possible Terminator scenario in our future?
On top of that, knowing how people have such a propensity to anthropomorphise, what would the effect of a sex robot intentionally designed to not only look but act human have? Would people develop deep feelings for them? Will sex robots replace our desire to socialise and spend time with other humans?
Then I thought about the Ikea Lamp commercial and spent the next hour watching videos on Youtube.