Announcing the She-bot 3000, a female companion who’s the perfect combination of girlfriend, mother, and therapist. For a low daily rate (and with no minimum commitment or background check required), the She-bot can be your bot, and yours only.
Why Finnish women matter to the history of science fiction. Holiday science books: let visions of squid and sarcophagi dance in their heads. Astronauts survive thanks to a black female mathematician. This robot could make your toddler Mark Zuckerberg. (Minus the billions.)
Don’t dis slang—it’s older than you are. Regarding the pain of fish (and humanities-loving robots). Fake scientists are real. Sexism messes up men’s mental health, too. Aimee Bender and the Ladies of Contemporary Fairytale.
In a universe slowly sinking into entropy, writing can take the disordered pieces of our experience and fit their edges together into something organized. If the work of a writer is to tease out meaning from the tangled mess of life, many of these algorithms essentially do the opposite, taking meaningful human posts or experiences and reducing them […]
Forget yoga—hallucinogenic ayahuasca is the new health cure du jour. H.G. Wells’s BFF was editor of Nature. Also from Nature: Wave goodbye to the 10,000-hours rule. Neurofiction, or stories that read your brain. Accurate AI models of existence? Not until robots dance.
Any Luddite with half a brain has already begun stockpiling nonperishables for the inevitable moment the robots rise up against us. Over at the Ploughshares blog, Joelle Renstrom recounts how writers were awakened to the threat of artificial intelligence: A certain likeness to humans inspires kinship, but when the line blurs, that kinship turns to […]
Robotics have come a long way in the last century, but even Siri can’t lay claim to impeccable British manners. The British Science Museum is crowdfunding a replica of the UK’s original talking robot, Eric.
An automaton symbolizes the creepy resemblance between us and the clockwork mechanisms we’ve invented… and to explore the awe and apprehension of mechanical existence. Michael Peck writes for Lit Hub on the literary history of cyborgs and robots through the centuries.
Facial recognition technology is a little racist. Two writers talk about the end of the world and more importantly, the end of social media. Robots are just babies—tiny, terrifying babies. Nabokov and butterfly sex.
Don’t miss the official trailer, just released last week, for Moon Shot, a web documentary series directed by Orlando von Einsiedel, and produced by Epic Digital and Bad Robot, surrounding some of the scientifically savvy entrepreneurs competing for the Google Lunar XPRIZE to send the first privately-funded robot to the moon.
Last year physicist Stephen Hawking suggested that advanced artificial intelligence, or AI, could lead to the end of humanity. How are scientists working on this issue? Teaching robots empathy with books! Newsweek reports on the Quixote system, which teaches AI a human sense of right and wrong.
I’ve long been afraid of toilets in Japan, beginning with the one in the temple we visited every summer starting in 1975, when my mother and I began to regularly go to her homeland in a bid to make sure I was familiar with her culture.
Creepy robots were often at the heart of Philip K. Dick stories. The future is now: a company is building a realistic looking robot to haunt your dreams and it looks strikingly similar to the science fiction author. Electric Literature reports on the project from Hanson Robotics: On their website, Hanson Robotics highlights their desire to […]
(Dan Weiss is out on tour with his band The Yellow Dress. He’ll be back on August 3rd.) Who is burning black churches? The weird history of weird news. What animal is going to infect us all and lead to our doom? Robots know. The office snake. Politics of the potty.
A real nerd’s nerd. Nerd. Ceding moral decisions to driverless cars. (Warning: A video immediately plays when you click the link.) Your dead dog is a robot. How do you feel? There is no such thing as a millennial. There is also no spoon. Changing research forever! Or that was the goal, at least. The […]
A new website called Poetry for Robots seeks to find out whether robots can learn human poetic language. It was inspired by Jorge Luis Borges’s theory that despite humanity’s near-infinite capacity for creating distinct metaphors, we still use the same ones over and over again in literature, like comparing eyes to the stars. The website […]
Your new lesson plan: Be smarter than a computer. John Henry. But instead of a railroad, it’s a computer. And instead of John Henry, it’s NPR’s Scott Horsley. Your stories may not persuade like you thought they did. The charming tale of a robot coming to destroy you. You aren’t measuring your baby right. This could be […]