Yesterday I got a heads-up from an audiobook about Hanson Robotics. Those things have really come along, and not only that, they seem to have built one as Philip K. Dick!
I wanted to insert a pic of it here, but there doesn’t seem to be a way to do that. So I’ll include a link instead. If you Google it, there are also YouTube videos of people conversing with it–yes, it talks too, although the conversations can get weird. Someone will ask it a question, and it gives an answer about a whole different subject.
Those automated self-controlling machines have been advancing in this century. At the V.A. medical center, there used to be a box on wheels named Wilma that moved by itself around the building, riding the lift up and down floors, carrying lab samples. It was weird to see it steering itself. And the local supermarket has one, too, a tall slim model that rolls around beeping, looking for things like spills to clean up. When it comes near me I always think, “Don’t zap me.”
(In this locked-down time, maybe it also looks for anyone not wearing a mask, and zaps that person into ashes before they can infect anyone.)
I once read an alternate history short story about Ernest Hemingway as a struggling SF writer. He sends stories to John Campbell at Astounding SF but gets rejection slips. On one of the slips, Campbell writes “overstocked on robots.” I forget the title now.
So now they need to make one of Isaac Asimov. What would make more sense, right?