By DEVON ST. CLAIRE
“Telepresence Robots add a new dimension to remote communication by connecting people in different locations,” as stated by Report Bazzar on July 4, 2017. It also gives any human ‘good or evil’ direct access into your personal life. Human psychology tells us that the more we know about something the greater the chances of overpowering and conquering it. Correct? Do we really want strangers knowing intimate details about our lives so they know exactly how to disarm us and force their will on us when we know little to nothing about them? Sun Tzu said in his book The Art Of War, “It is said that if you know your enemies and know yourself, you will not be imperiled in a hundred battles; if you do not know your enemies but do know yourself, you will win one and lose one; if you do not know your enemies nor yourself, you will be imperiled in every single battle.” Very little is known about this new technology that they call “Tele-presence Robots.” The current articles and publications that are being published about this device make it sound like a brilliant milestone in civilization. Positive descriptions eloquently written about this robot make it appear that we can all have access to super human strength beyond our physical capabilities, but is that REALLY the truth? As humans with limited knowledge about this new invention we would be foolish not to ask questions. When you purchase a new car, do you not ask millions of questions about it before you buy into it? How much do we truly know these robots? Do we intimately know the men and women who are making and ultimately controlling these robots? We are wary of opening up to a friend about certain things yet we open up our lives to robotic devices made by complete strangers.
The only information we have access to about the Telepresence Robots are what is being presented to us. These ever present robots are being promoted for their ability to assist us against terrorism and war. As one article describes, “Telepresence robots represent the best and perhaps last line of defense against terrorists.” Is it really our last line and only hope of defense? Others have promoted this robot by saying, “People can drive a telepresence robot around a work environment, around a school, around a hospital to reach people that they might otherwise have a difficult time contacting.” Do we really want to give a micro-managing boss or manager a way to keep even a closer eye on us at work with a terminator of sorts peering over our stage-like cubical in an already stressful work environment? Let’s really do our research here before we support anymore of these exquisite devices. Our ancestors didn’t need this much support and they lived fulfilled lives. Are we really weaker and more helpless then our forefathers?
Yet, even more sales pitches are being conjured up using the health industry. Thus playing on our human fear of death or sickness by saying, “If these robots are present in our daily lives they will help lower the chances of dying from a stroke or serious illness by helping paramedics get to our door faster in a health emergency.” The stress of having a robotic like all-seeing-eye constantly present behind closed doors seems like it would intensify heart problems or the psychological well being for some people rather then help a human to relax and unwind in the privacy of their own home, backyard or local bar. Not to mention, the response time of paramedics, police or emergency personnel will still be effected by weather conditions, traffic, emergency vehicles speed or functioning capabilities and the human beings still operating them.
No human wants a robot present in their daily lives, keeping an eye on them at all times no matter how you sell it. Even animals require a certain level of privacy. Are we no better then animals? If we didn’t want our parents, teachers, or bosses breathing down our necks 24/7 as children how much more are we not going to want robots keeping track of us. Perhaps we have forgotten the already present camera’s at stop lights and toll booths that have been watching us as we drive. Now we are going to get excited because it appears that society is allowing us to have super human abilities to be anywhere and see anything we want? Is it truly a gift to have this Telepresence Robot present with us by 2023, or are we about to give up more of our human rights and privacy just so we can feel more powerful then we already are?
The answers to such questions I leave for you to discover…
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