Posts Tagged ‘war’

Robots on my Mind

In The Daily Drool on May 20, 2010 at 12:08 pm

Anybots telepresence robots go to meetings for you, so you can talk to your boss without having to breathe in his haletosis...

Look, I love The Terminator.  I loved the second Terminator… and I saw the third (but don’t remember is too well), and the 4th, well, somebody really screwed the pooch on the ending there, but all the T4 business before the final 15 mins?  Pretty damn fun.

But I just watched this video about the milatary advancements on robots and kind of shuddered.

Because while they are primarily support-bots at present (no laser-eyed walkers/talkers/shooters yet) I can’t help but wonder, what is the point?

Stay off my Rock!

Ever since man first encountered other man and decided that defending his patch of forest/desert/pond was worth thunking the other in the head over, their has been casualty of war – that casualty is human.  Kings and Tyrants, Bullies and Bosses, have each saddled up their own armies of subservients, slaves, and citizens to serve their noble/not-so-noble cause… all to see who could outlast and outkill the other.  At some point, someone runs out of men, gets killed themselves, or suffer at the hands of their own angry mob… because there is a human tally.  There is horror and pain and mass suffering, but it is human.

What then, is the point of a field full of robots?  When does there come an end? (Because I’m fast-forwarding past the Robots vs. Humans element here, mass casualties, horror, rage and defiance… yes, yes, it will be gruesome and horrifying… and then the “other side” of that coin will invest in robot technology, so they can pit their metal against yours… which brings us back to – ) How do you top fields of robots?  How do you determine victory then?

I’m suddenly realizing that this sounds like I’m saying human deaths in battle are a good thing… but I think I’m speaking purely from an end-game perspective-  if the loss is strictly technological, how do fueding despots declare victory?  When the last robot falls, the factories will just make more… won’t they?  Are we simply aiming for a new kind of destruction… one made of metal and webcams, and PS3 pro-robot operators?  Or does soemthing worse come along… something more deadly than robot assassins.

Resistance is futile!

And is this how people felt when they first hear that computer-makers had designs on landing an IBM in every household?  “OH GOD, we’ll all become hermits, we’re losing our humanity, the world is in peril of becoming one gigantic throbbing electronic PULSE!” Umm… yeah, well, it kind of happened (sans hermit… I mean, I’m kind of a hermit, but we aren’t part of the Borg… yet)  And I kind of like it… I mean, I don’t want to imagine the horror and panic if the internet just… went away… (shudder)

Yet there is something, unsettling, about these field robots.  Something creepy to me about the violence it seems to excuse.  And God forbid  (through some sort of technological glitch right out of the movies) a robot on the battlefield ever looked around at the carnage and wondered “Why?”

If that ever happens, I’m heading to my secret bunker in the hill and setting up shop as a goat-herder-slash-gun-trader… Look for me in Terminator 5!

Because Maid Marion was there…

In Essays, The Daily Drool on May 17, 2010 at 9:58 am



Somewhere in the theater someone has taken off their shoes and the odiferous cloud encapsulated within has been unleashed.  I’m tempted to ask “Who took their shoes off” just loud enough to carry and scarry the perpetrator back into hiding.

But I don’t.

Onstage, sorry, on screen, splashed before me are pints of masculine blood, and Maid Marion (and the rest of her fair ilk) are expected to pick up the broken and abandoned pieces left behind…

Because this is how the world worked…

…Is this how the world works?

What cruel, cruel creatures we are – to see a thing desired and design a bigger hammer -a scarier doctrine – a flashier promise, to try and take it.  Man want, man kill, man take.  Sometimes I wonder just what it is we are doing here – did God make a mistake?  Or are we a bet, more reality show to the heavens than we can know…

Killing in the name of God, of King, and of country… and yet here I sit, paying customer to a movie, a Robin Hood unlike any other – bloodier, grittier, perhaps more realisticly brutal and cold (and God, their are rats on the dinner table!) and yet unrealistically noble…  and I’m struck by the sheer destructive nature of the beast.

And woman… oh women… where are we?

This movie was incredibly focused on Maid Marion’s sacrifice and strength, and I sat there watching in horror of how little say so many have had – Man vs. Woman, Rich vs. Poor, Government vs. Citizen … It’s there in her face as the men around her go off to war, take what they want, and decide the fate of England.

We drive home and I look up at the stars, a rat in the maze, a cog in this experimental wheel.  We fancy ourselves so evolved, yet we are all just one sun-spot away from the dark ages – all this technology we worship and revere, it connects us and rules our lives.  We behave because we are taught to, not because it is in our nature.  Humankind has an incredible and infinte ability to learn, but that learning is not inherent… Perhaps this is where people find “soul” … perhaps this is what is meant of yin and yang.  A fish bowl of light and dark, constanly turning one another over and spitting some out – in constant struggle for victory – to make “you” like “me” whatever “me” may be.  Soul…

A choice perhaps to be one or the other, but most often some of both… internalizing the global fight “To be- or not to be- a soul-ful individual”

And I’m depressed.  I’m impressed with the film, I’m enjoying Russel Crowe’s physique, I’m identifying with Marion’s exquisite nature and telling myself that I too am exquisite, and that it is this quality that prevents me from finding my match thus far – that I require an exquisite man and all the men I have given my heart to have been less than… And then I see that maybe I am sucumbing to ego, and that perhaps I m none of these things, just a 30 yr. old in a theater with her parents, neither here nor there in the world at large… And I am sad that I am part of this incredible violent wheel.   Then I take solace in the fact that I, an artist, am trying to make it better.   And after that I feel shame that I really am not doing anything of the sort.   Finally,  I feel ridiculous for suffering under such an avalanche of unweildy variables as these impossible thoughts.

And I take a breath… and the stinky feet have been put away… and my dad is leaning over to my mom to ask her what the King just said… and I realize that I don’t want to think such heavy thoughts right now.  I want to be carried away by story like my fellow theater mates… I want to revel in the alure of Robin of the Hood, walk out of this theater and back into something brighter… only I can’t because it has me stirred.  I am ready to jump atop my horse and go racing after the enemy…

And all this from a movie, a movie about a man who had no people and found himself a leader among them…  A man who has been dressed in tights, in leather, and now in chain-mail… the world is changing and Robin Hood’s dressing room is proof.


Sometimes I think too much.  Sometimes I should just go to bed instead of waxing angrily at the tides…  but sometimes you see Maid Marion walking under the weight of an insufferable world and you look around for a sword.