Updated: Feb 26
In pop culture, advanced technology (whether humanoid or not) is often cold and mechanical or downright threatening. One of the most famously-frightening robots is HAL 9000 from 2001: A Space Odyssey. As Carnegie Mellon's Robot Hall of Fame said in describing him, "all of us ask whether we want to create intelligent machines that may someday endanger us."
In real life, the technology around us is changing ridiculously fast. Just 20 years ago, no one had a smartphone, and getting on the Internet involved a dial-up connection to AOL and a handful of other sites. The thing is, technology isn’t inherently good or evil.
I enjoy images of tech that are friendlier and more organic--like Janet from the Good Place--who is funny (and comes in "good" and "bad" versions, the latter of which is more obnoxious than evil). I also love EVE from Wall-E (Pixar). The name EVE (in addition to referencing the Bible) is an acronym for Extra-terrestrial Vegetation Evaluator. Eve is an egg-shaped feminine robot who helps to restore life on Earth (which has become a wasteland) and also saves Wall-E's life. She’s a symbol of birth, growth, life, love, and hope.
What’s your favorite robot from pop culture? Is it cold and icy, or warm and fuzzy?
Image credit: Fanpop