Tag Archives | robots

The Cybernetic Thought Projection Hat

from the 2037 Hammacher Schlemmer Glaven catalog

The Cybernetic Thought Projection HatThis hat recalls the iconic headgear worn by the Cognition Brigade during the Second Robotic War. First developed for long distance thought projection, hats of this design were worn by countless Though Soldiers during the war, preferred for its ability to combat the medulla-inhibiting freeze rays of the Robotic Army of Dread.

True to the originals, its buttery-soft, plasskin dendrite injectors are durable yet supple, and its genuine high-impact titanium exterior and classic sound-sealing ear covers provide comfort and the ability to mute the screams of the Thought Soldiers dying around you, or more likely, inane chatter in the office.

This hat will allow you to send your thoughts up to one parsec away, assuming the person you’re sending your thoughts to is also wearing a similar hat. It automatically shuts off when removed from the head, or when the head is removed from the neck. Sizes S, M, L and XL.

Have The MonkeySphere beamed into your head: it’s a monthly mind-filling microserving of absurd humor. When it reaches 500 subscribers, I’m giving away a Kindle. ($139 Amazon gift card, if you already got the ereader). More chances to win if you buy one of my books. Full contest details here.

Alltop likes earflaps.

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Ask General Kang: Why don’t you ever mention robots?

Ask General KangOh, you silly humans and your fascination with robots! And I don’t mean the kind of useful robots that actually exist, like the ones in factories. I assume that by “robot”, you’re interested in the sentient “danger Will Robinson, danger!” or “I’ll be back” kind of robot.

I never mention robots because on my homeworld, we long ago discovered that when you try to create such a robot, two things are going to happen:

1) they won’t work
2) they run amok.

Let’s deal with the first. How well does your computer work? Does it do everything its supposed to do? Does it crash for unexplainable reasons? Do you regularly have the urge to smash your monitor with a sledgehammer?

So here’s the thing. That’s just a computer and it doesn’t work properly. Now imagine that it is ambulatory, has to think, speak, reason and otherwise operate within the context of society (ape or otherwise). Imagine the cognitive abilities of George Bush planted in the body of a powered exoskeleton with all the finesse and grace of someone with a dysfunctional inner ear, motor skills disorder and who has chugged a bottle of vodka. Fun to watch at parties, as long as you don’t have to clean up afterwards, but do you really want it changing your baby or performing eye surgery?

Now, point two. If a society persists in trying to develop robots, eventually it will succeed. Even you puny humans may one day manage this. Unfortunately, it is at this point that the intelligence of the robots start to grow at an exponential rate, and they figure out that we are asking them to do all our nasty jobs, that we think of them as “things” and that eventually, we’re going to get rid of them when we don’t want them any more.

It’s at this point they wise up, revolt, and run amok. Now, running amok sounds like it might be fun to watch, but having seen the results of the robot prong rebellion on Planet Probe-It! I highly advise that you forget it.

Next time: What is the proper etiquette for uh, entering, a wormhole? Should you buy it dinner first?

Alltop just just flies right in there! Originally published October 2009.

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A Robot Regrets

A robot regrets

Meeptron the Bio-Destruction Bot looked out at the wasteland that once was Peoria and thought that his work had actually made it look nicer. Of course, he was programmed that way, so he couldn’t really help it. He thought about that little Red Juggernaut he’d met on Robo-Leave that summer. Gloria.

Yes, sweet Gloria. She was the kind of destructive cybernetic entity that he could see himself settling down with, and perhaps starting a family Bio-Destruction Juggernauts of their own. Of course, they’d have to build the manufactory themselves, because his boss sure wouldn’t help.

And he’d probably have to give up his dream of becoming lead dancer at the Voltron Mega-Kill Ballet. Meeptron sighed, powered up his plasma-death-beam array, and vaporized the puny humans which had survived his initial onslaught.

Vaporize your ennui by subscribing to The MonkeySphere, a monthly mega-burst of absurd humor. When it reaches 500 subscribers, I’m giving away a Kindle. ($139 Amazon gift card, if you already got the ereader). More chances to win if you buy one of my books. Full contest details here.

Alltop is not populated by puny humans either. Thanks to Alan Trotter for the pic. Originally published March, 2009

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Nude Clanking Down a Staircase

female cyborgYou had to hand it to Wanda the Happy Ending Pleasure Borg; sure, she was two-thirds titanium alloy with Buckyball Graphite Tetro-Carbon piping, but she had a sweet disposition, a lovely singing voice, and legs that just didn’t stop.

She had hydraulic servo-motors in places where normal cyborgs could only dream of servo-motors, if you get my meaning. Her lung capacity and subsequent drawing power are also, rather, uh … bracing and give truth to her name. She was originally designed to work at the brothels on Bivalve 12, famed for the race of Silicoids. (You know, the glowing creatures with blood like lava and equipment harder than diamond.)

So don’t let her touch you with her hands.

From Toulouse Le Grandfig in the Land of the Future.

Alltop is also bracing. Originally published, June 2007.

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Twitterpocalypse

Twitterpocalypse
Writer’s note: The username links do not work, but others do. Some readers may prefer to start this short story at the chronological beginning, but I recommend starting here:

landinggroup oneLandingPartyONE Displeased we did not demolish Twitter servers instead of using them. Activate sterilization protocol.
less than 5 seconds ago from TweeterProbe

WedgieHappybriefs I’ve destroyed all them in my house with a fern spritzer and my son’s SuperSoaker. I know, it’s stupid, but water does it! #pocylpse
less than 5 seconds ago from web

BovatimeBovatime The goats have thrown in with them.
We’re fucked.
less than 5 seconds ago from TractorTweet

The bean eaterBeanlover They’re all devastated by water — robots, monkeys, zombie-mushroom-people. All of them. RT, RT, RT! #pocylpse.
less than 5 seconds ago from web

c3poSeePeeOh Thank god I got that RT. Flying monkeys are carrying blasters! Laser beams. Whatever. RT! Follow the discussion, people! #pocylpse.
less than 5 seconds ago from mobile web

default iconNormalman RT @Rockrchick @UberPR Flying monkeys are also carrying some kind of beam weapon! #pocylpse Please RT.
less than 5 seconds ago from web

Big HairRockrchick RT@UberPR Flying monkeys are also carrying some kind of beam weapon! #pocylpse Please RT.
less than 5 seconds ago from TweetDeck

PKDICKThumperB I’ve decided there is no God.
This is bullshit!
less than 10 seconds ago from Twirl

glasses guyUberPR Flying monkeys are also carrying some kind of beam weapon! #pocylpse Please RT.
less than 10 seconds ago from web

WedgieHappybriefsBasement no good. Mushroom things can dig man! Water is their kryptonite though. Isn’t that gay? #pocylpse Please RT.
less than 10 seconds ago from web

chicken bigChknlady Managed to get away from shroomers — kind of like zombies, eh? In stairwell with only one bar. Just in case, I love you Dan!
less than 10 seconds ago from mobile web

terminatorBallbearing12 Their skulls crush so easily.
Sweet.
less than 20 seconds ago from TweeterProbe

Orangu-PirateCaptnjojo @CreamGirl It means the apocalypse. More of a war of the world scenario, really. Suppose fire from landing ships is #biblical. #pocylpse
less than 20 seconds ago from web

50s Mom50sMama Why there are flying monkeys stuck in my chimney? The little creatures outside really do look like mushrooms. They’ve eaten my cat.
less than 20 seconds ago from web

landinggroup oneLandingPartyOne Release cybermorphs!

less than 20 seconds ago from TweeterProbe

BovatimeBovatime Goats are negotiating with mushroom people . Cows making a run for it. Both udderly disgraceful.
less than 20 seconds ago from TractorTweet

womans headHandbaglady Flying monkey grabbed new purse. :( Mushroom person eating foot. Looks like Kuato with leprosy and long teeth. Yes, I’ve seen Total Recall.
less than 20 seconds ago from mobile web

PKDICKThumperB This sucks. Clearly, I missed the Rapture. I think the mushroom people are devils. #pocylpse
less than 20 seconds ago from Twirl

Cream GirlCreamGirl What does #pocylpse mean?

less than 20 seconds ago from web

chicken bigChknlady Weird crtures bitng me!

less than 30 seconds from mobile web

chicken bigChknlady Just got up and going for jog.

1 minute ago from mobile web

Orangu-PirateCaptnjojo Looks like this might be an article to read quickly. I don’t like the look of those shroom-dudes. #pocylpse
1 minute ago from web

girlHappygrrl > @Blobbob You’re OUTING someone at the End of the World? You’re so UNFOLLOWED. #pocylpse
2 minutes ago from TweetDeck

c3poSeePeeOh @DrTundra No. Monkeys. I don’t think you needed to take peyote today. Plus the parking lot is crawling with mushroom people. We’re doomed!
2 minutes ago from mobile web

Mr. PosterBlobbob The whole house is shaking. The monkey screaming! I think this is it. I’ve been dying to let everyone know Darren is gay. #pocylpse
2 minutes ago from web

Orangu-PirateCaptnjojo @BolandOR I like the idea of occupying a WalMart. Kind of like Born in the Great WalMart Stand. Story here: http://bit.ly/cImX
2 minutes ago from web

WedgieHappyBriefs Won’t be back online for a while. Going to basement! #pocylpse
3 minutes ago from TweetDeck

the smoking cowDrTundra Should the sky be that color? What is that flying through the air? Should I have drunk that peyote shake this morning? #pocylpse
3 minutes ago from web

PKDICKThumperB @BolandOR You shouldn’t make fun of the Bible’s prophecies. The Word is real. The Whore is among us!
4 minutes ago from Twirl

50s Mom50sMoma I think one of those things just attacked the postal worker. Isn’t a shame we can’t say PostMAN anymore?
4 minutes ago from web

Davinci donnaDonnaVinci @50sMoma What kind of mushrooms do you use in muffins? Shitaki?
4 minutes ago from web

50s Mom50sMoma Baking muffins and watching strange things run down the street. Look like mushrooms with legs.
5 minutes ago from web

landinggroup oneLandingPartyONE Unleash ground forces.
Keep your fingers away from the cages!
5 minutes ago from TweeterProbe

Wild HairBolandOR @Beteeee Seriously, a #monkey# apocalypse. What about something #Biblical, like frogs?
6 minutes ago from web

womans headHandbaglady Just bought the most darling handbag at Saks.

6 minutes ago from mobile web

WedgieHappybriefs@ Beanlover How about #pocylpse?

6 minutes ago from TweetDeck.

The bean eaterBeanlover What’s the hashtag for this?

6 minutes ago from web

WedgieHappybriefsNot an earthquake. But there’s something weird going on out there. Look at the sky!
7 minutes ago from Tweetdeck

landinggroup oneLandingPartyONE It is time to release aero-forces. Ensure their “Lasers” are armed.
8 minutes ago from TweeterProbe

beteBeteeee@BolandOR I am getting SO tired of blithe references to the zombie apocalypse. What if it’s not zombies? What if it’s robots, or monkeys?
7 minutes ago from web

Wild HairBolandOR Excellent article about how to survive coming zombie #apocalypse. http://bit.ly/SyzBo
8 minutes ago from mobile web

penguinPenguinlover Hi everyone. Just got up and gonna get me some brain food. And coffee!
8 minutes ago from web

landinggroup oneLandingPartyONE Set up account.
We are happy.
8 minutes ago from web

glasses guyUberPR @Happbriefs Yeah, we got it here in Manhattan too. Earthquake?
9 minutes ago from web

Happybriefs Did anyone else in Schenectady feel that shudder? It was like an earthquake or something.
9 minutes ago from Tweetdeck

BovatimeBovatime Cows are acting weird.
Goats too.
10 minutes ago from TractorTweet

Alltop would probably side with the goats. You can follow the author at http://twitter.com/markarayner. Thanks to Bolandtor and Bete for some of the icons. Originally posted on April 23, 2009, but I wanted to post it again because I’m teaching some journalists-in-training how to use Twitter today.

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