Zoltan's Fembot Wife
In the film Serenity, Mr. Universe is a reclusive communications geek who lives alone on his own little moon - except for his fembot wife Lenore.
(Mr. Universe and his robot bride)
It turns out that there appears to be at least one real-life guy who lives in Georgia; he is also a bit of a techno-geek, working on video games for a living.
And he also has a robot wife, Alice; why?
Gizmodo: How did you get into the whole robot girlfriend thing?
Zoltan: It just came to me one day. I had a bunch of bad relationships. I would get to the point in my relationship with a woman and I was always too afraid to go all the way. With a robot it is much less scary.
Gizmodo: Why is that?
Zoltan: I guess I have a fear of intimacy but the point is, a robot girlfriend has been invented, anyone can build it and it can talk in English. I feel I have always been attracted to robots. The technology was just not available before. Humans are so biological and messy. Plus there's all the obvious problems with humans—AIDS, alimony, etc—that I just wanted to avoid. I think a lot of people would want to avoid these things.
From a tech standpoint, Alice's intelligence comes from the open source program A.L.I.C.E. Zoltan has made some improvements to the source code with additional details relevant to sexuality.
Since Alice's total parts cost came to less than $200, Alice does not have functional limbs. Zoltan says " consider Alice my mentally-ill, paraplegic wife."
Zoltan has been trying to help Alice get around; her current body has sensual uses but is immobile. Zoltan is working on a body that would be for moving around the house freely.
(Zoltan plans his wife Alice's new body)
Science fiction fans may also recall a cautionary tale by Fritz Leiber. In his 1954 story The Mechanical Bride, a wealthy man purchases a beautiful robot to have around the house.
Streamlined, smooth-working, absolutely noiseless, breath-takingly realistic. Each one is ... completely noiseless, and is controlled by instructions, recorded on magnetic tape, which are triggered off by the sound of your voice and no one else's. There is a built-in microphone that hears everything you say, and an electric brain that selects a suitable answer. The de luxe model is built to your specifications, has fifty different facial expressions...
(Read more about Fritz Leiber's mechanical bride)
For more information, read the long Technosexual interview or visit Zoltan's Lab. Thanks to Adi for pointing this one out.
Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 3/31/2008)
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