Foul Play in FunlandMy daughter was watching the Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! episode Foul Play in Funland yesterday.  The episode is about an operator who wants a fleet of robots to run his of an amusement park.  In the end, his sister foils the idea because she doesn’t think children shouldn’t operate a place for children.  I thought that was quite forward thinking for 1969.

Today I was on the phone was my gas company since my furnace wasn’t working.  I should say I was on the phone with myself.  Service, Repair, *my phone number*, *my name* and a whole lot of yeses along the way.  In the end, a human got on the phone to schedule an appointment.  I felt so relieved when a person came on.   I always feel like such an idiot talking to those automatic speech recognition systems.  Then you try and beat one by pressing all sorts of buttons to try and get a human.  Most times, that just prolongs the agony.

That got me thinking of how much robotic interaction impacts our our lives.  Is it really a good thing?   Does it not matter to most people?   Is it one of those things that won’t matter to our kids if they are around it from such a young age?  As an example, I would much rather push buttons on a phone and interact with a computer like I’m programmed to do instead of talking to it.   The reality is though, the computer doesn’t really care.

Here are some more articles on human interactions with robots:

Do you have an opinion on talking to automatic speech recognition systems?   What are your thoughts on the impact of children and robots?

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