Harper in action.


Thursday, November 26, 2009

Automated Parenting

Throughout the years technology has promised so many amazing advances (I'm still waiting for my jet pack, by the way). But something I think the tech nerds are woefully behind on is the robotic childcare provider, or RoboMom.

From Fritz Lang's Metropolis right on down to Dollhouse, we've seen men making machines to replace women in the bedroom. But in typical male short term goal orientation, there is never any thought about what comes post-coitus. You know, kids.

One of the few examples of advanced parenting is Rosie from the Jetsons. But again, she was a maid who also had to occasionally pull double duty while Jane was getting her galactic hair did and George was in hot water with Mr. Spacely.

Ironically, perhaps the best robotic babysitter was the Cyberdyne Systems Model 101. The Terminator. In T2, the Terminator protected John Conner while simultaneously teaching and learning important lessons about the value of human life, how to use '90s teen slang, and why humans cry. Throw in a motorcycle ride through the LA river and some gun safety lessons and you've got the perfect candidate for the Big Brother program.

So maybe we can try to throw some of the stimulation money at tech research for creating caring, loving, nurturing terminators. Until then, I'll just have to rely on the same old stand by we've been using since the 1950's. Television.