So at the beginning of the semester, I was enrolled in a robot ethics class. It was okay. The professor was nice, and the information was interesting. I really thought that I would pursue the Information Science minor. It sounded cool. I liked the idea of creating new technology and being able to design new things.
That’s what I’ve always been drawn to. Creating. Designing. Inventing. Investigating. All good things.
And then I realized… I don’t like working with just metal. I like working with things that have feeling, that have life in them.
I noticed this during the 3rd week of class when we were watching a Youtube video about a robot that this elderly lady was obsessed with. It was the idea that her feedback made the robot more interactive with the lady, and as a result, she became more attached. After time went by, the lady brought he robot with her everywhere annoying many of the people she lived with. They asked her to put the robot away in her room and she looked like they had asked her to stop living. It was scary, and I couldn’t understand it.
Watching the video, I was a little creeped out, and I couldn’t wrap my head around how a person could prefer robot interaction over human interaction. There was another video of someone making a robot exactly in a person’s image, and this robot was presented to the daughter of the person. She obviously was creeped out and wanted it to end. I was creeped out for the girl. I felt a little antsy just watching it. I cringed multiple times and couldn’t imagine making such a device.
It was at that moment that I wasn’t really into all the technology. I didn’t like the idea of robots taking over the world. There are obviously many things that robots can do that people cannot, but I would rather work on finding a way to work on human interactions rather than fix it with metal.
Another thing was that the class was all about philosophy, which was pretty annoying. He made us question everything. He put a command on the board and asked the other side of the class to find out everything that was wrong with the command and try doing everything but the command while still not violating what the command was asking. It’s kinda crazy how much was wrong with the command.
Oh, not to mention that most of the class were engineering majors, so for many of them, this was alot of fun. They found it easy to find something wrong with the command, and my team had to keep modifying the command to be more and more specific so that they could not possibly find anything wrong with it. For me, I was just thinking, “… guys, just do the damn command. If we say write, just write.” But yea, the majority of the class found it super fun.
So philosophy definitely was not my thing. We had to turn in a paper about utilitarianism, which was kind of interesting, but I had the hardest time writing the paper. I didn’t even finish it or submit it. I only had 2 of the 5 pages that I needed to write. The class just wasn’t for me.
I think the only thing that kept me in the class for as long as I was was the fact that he had these 2 more-adorable-than-life white fluffy puppies that he brought to class and passed around. They were so cute in that when you picked them up to hand them off, they would press against you and lift their arms up as if getting ready to be picked it. They were soooo cute!
But then I realized that the dogs weren’t going to help my grade in that class, so I dropped it.
Plus, I am already taking a whole bunch of classes required for my major this year, and knowing that this class was not as important as my other classes, I knew that I would fall behind in the assignments for the class (Just look at what happened last semester with that opera class… I’m still salty -.-).