A Grey Future
Suzanne Northey Public
The year is 2030. You wake up and look outside your bedroom
window. The apocalyptic night of a world reduced to metal, fire and
ash, where you are simply a plaything in a world governed by robotics,
has become real.
Whilst robotic advancement could prove enormously beneficial to
our society – particularly in relation to medicine and manufacturing
productivity – can we be sure these hyper-intelligent robots would
have our best interests at heart? Do you really think that we slow, soft-
bodied and biological humans, couldn’t be overthrown by the fast and
Currently robotic prosthetics are improving thousands of lives.
But as science continues to push the boundaries of the possible,
these prosthetics are slowly becoming available only to those who
can afford them, not necessarily those who need them. Now, the
latest advancement in robotic prosthetics is called the ‘Terminator’
arm. This prosthetic is wizard. When you see food and you want to
eat set food, your brain sends signals to your arm, telling it to pick up
the food, eat the food. This prosthetic can do that. And just for the
small price of $45,000.
Ironically, the countries with the highest rates of amputations, with
more than 300,000 occurring each year due to land mines, are
developing and war-torn. Do you really think they will be able to
afford this? They are creating an incredible piece of robotic technology,
but being so unaffordable, it is useless.
We have all seen the horrific work safe ads; we know that many
dangerous jobs exist in today’s world. But if we implemented robotics
specifically in professions where lives were put at risk, couldn’t we save
them? For example, last year 92 workers in a Samsung factory in
South Korea died of leukaemia because of exposure to benzene and
other cancer-causing chemicals. This was completely preventable. Do
you know who can’t get leukaemia? Robotics.
But where do we draw the line? It is estimated that in 25 years,
3 million professions will be automated. Do you think that could be
true? But when you think about it we can see it happening now. I
mean I can’t even remember the last time I haven’t used the self-
serve checkout at Woolworths.
Now the picture becomes clear, doesn’t it? A world where a robot
delivers your mail, collects your rubbish, cleans your house, and even
teaches your subjects. They are everywhere but what if they turn