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[tor dot com] I Sing the Body Electric: 5 SF Works About Sex and Technology
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James Nicoll
2021-09-16 14:19:21 UTC
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I Sing the Body Electric: 5 SF Works About Sex and Technology
https://www.tor.com/2021/09/16/i-sing-the-body-electric-5-sf-works-about-sex-and-technology/
--
My reviews can be found at http://jamesdavisnicoll.com/
My tor pieces at https://www.tor.com/author/james-davis-nicoll/
My Dreamwidth at https://james-davis-nicoll.dreamwidth.org/
My patreon is at https://www.patreon.com/jamesdnicoll
Michael F. Stemper
2021-09-19 17:47:42 UTC
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Post by James Nicoll
I Sing the Body Electric: 5 SF Works About Sex and Technology
https://www.tor.com/2021/09/16/i-sing-the-body-electric-5-sf-works-about-sex-and-technology/
Jander Panell[1] from _The Robots of Dawn_ wasn't on the list, and
this is probably right, since he wasn't built for such purposes.
However, the fact that he was so used is the core of the story.
<http://www.isfdb.org/cgi-bin/title.cgi?1289>


[1] The back cover of the BBDR MMPB says "Parnell", but I couldn't
find that spelling inside.
--
Michael F. Stemper
The FAQ for rec.arts.sf.written is at
<http://leepers.us/evelyn/faqs/sf-written.htm>
Please read it before posting.
Michael F. Stemper
2021-09-20 15:46:40 UTC
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Post by Michael F. Stemper
Post by James Nicoll
I Sing the Body Electric: 5 SF Works About Sex and Technology
https://www.tor.com/2021/09/16/i-sing-the-body-electric-5-sf-works-about-sex
-and-technology/
Jander Panell[1] from _The Robots of Dawn_ wasn't on the list, and
this is probably right, since he wasn't built for such purposes.
errm... it’s a _robot_. Anything not built in, or retrofitted later, isn't
not there. if the robot had the, ahem, required hardware, then it _was_ built
for such purposes, or was at the least fitted with aftermarket mods.
Solaria made *humaniform* robots. This doesn't mean that they were built
as sex toys, any more than the fact that my car has a glove box means
that it was built as a glove storage device.
--
Michael F. Stemper
The name of the story is "A Sound of Thunder".
It was written by Ray Bradbury. You're welcome.
Ted Nolan <tednolan>
2021-09-20 16:49:14 UTC
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Post by Michael F. Stemper
Post by Michael F. Stemper
Post by James Nicoll
I Sing the Body Electric: 5 SF Works About Sex and Technology
https://www.tor.com/2021/09/16/i-sing-the-body-electric-5-sf-works-about-sex
-and-technology/
Jander Panell[1] from _The Robots of Dawn_ wasn't on the list, and
this is probably right, since he wasn't built for such purposes.
errm... it’s a _robot_. Anything not built in, or retrofitted later, isn't
not there. if the robot had the, ahem, required hardware, then it _was_ built
for such purposes, or was at the least fitted with aftermarket mods.
Solaria made *humaniform* robots. This doesn't mean that they were built
as sex toys, any more than the fact that my car has a glove box means
that it was built as a glove storage device.
As I recall, Daneel could "eat" and Calvin's "Liar" was attractive, so
it's not like it wasn't foreshadowed.
--
columbiaclosings.com
What's not in Columbia anymore..
Michael F. Stemper
2021-09-20 17:50:58 UTC
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Post by Ted Nolan <tednolan>
Post by Michael F. Stemper
Solaria made *humaniform* robots. This doesn't mean that they were built
as sex toys, any more than the fact that my car has a glove box means
that it was built as a glove storage device.
As I recall, Daneel could "eat" and Calvin's "Liar" was attractive, so
it's not like it wasn't foreshadowed.
I just skimmed "Liar!" and the only mention of Herbie's appearance that
I could find was the fact that he had "photoelectric eyes". Is it
possible that you're thinking of Tony from "Satisfaction Guaranteed"?
--
Michael F. Stemper
Deuteronomy 24:17
Dorothy J Heydt
2021-09-20 19:36:09 UTC
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Post by James Nicoll
Post by Michael F. Stemper
Post by Michael F. Stemper
Post by James Nicoll
I Sing the Body Electric: 5 SF Works About Sex and Technology
https://www.tor.com/2021/09/16/i-sing-the-body-electric-5-sf-works-about-sex
Post by Michael F. Stemper
Post by Michael F. Stemper
Post by James Nicoll
-and-technology/
Jander Panell[1] from _The Robots of Dawn_ wasn't on the list, and
this is probably right, since he wasn't built for such purposes.
errm... it’s a _robot_. Anything not built in, or retrofitted later, isn't
not there. if the robot had the, ahem, required hardware, then it _was_ built
for such purposes, or was at the least fitted with aftermarket mods.
Solaria made *humaniform* robots. This doesn't mean that they were built
as sex toys, any more than the fact that my car has a glove box means
that it was built as a glove storage device.
As I recall, Daneel could "eat"
But he had to find a private place to open his "stomach" and
empty it out, lest it start to stink.
Post by James Nicoll
and Calvin's "Liar" was attractive, so
it's not like it wasn't foreshadowed.
There was an attractive *man* working for US Robots, whom Calvin
(in her forties if not older) had a crush on, and the telepathic
robot told her he liked her, because that was what she wanted to
hear. When she found out, she destroyed him with a First Law
paradox.
--
Dorothy J. Heydt
Vallejo, California
djheydt at gmail dot com
Www.kithrup.com/~djheydt/
Wolffan
2021-09-21 12:35:40 UTC
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Post by Ted Nolan <tednolan>
Post by Michael F. Stemper
Post by Michael F. Stemper
Post by James Nicoll
I Sing the Body Electric: 5 SF Works About Sex and Technology
https://www.tor.com/2021/09/16/i-sing-the-body-electric-5-sf-works-about-
sex
-and-technology/
Jander Panell[1] from _The Robots of Dawn_ wasn't on the list, and
this is probably right, since he wasn't built for such purposes.
errm... it’s a _robot_. Anything not built in, or retrofitted later, isn't
not there. if the robot had the, ahem, required hardware, then it _was_ built
for such purposes, or was at the least fitted with aftermarket mods.
Solaria made *humaniform* robots. This doesn't mean that they were built
as sex toys, any more than the fact that my car has a glove box means
that it was built as a glove storage device.
As I recall, Daneel could "eat"
design decision and extra manufacturing effort, specifically so that a robot
could _appear_ human and not cause problems with the bigots on the
germ-infested hell planet. So that superior forms of life (Spacers) didn’t
have to get too close to the infectious hordes. Think of it as Spacer social
distancing.
Post by Ted Nolan <tednolan>
and Calvin's "Liar" was attractive,
err... no. the _robot_ wasn’t the object of Susan Calvin’s attraction.
Post by Ted Nolan <tednolan>
so
it's not like it wasn't foreshadowed.
Ted Nolan <tednolan>
2021-09-21 12:55:41 UTC
Reply
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Post by James Nicoll
Post by Ted Nolan <tednolan>
Post by Michael F. Stemper
Post by Michael F. Stemper
Post by James Nicoll
I Sing the Body Electric: 5 SF Works About Sex and Technology
https://www.tor.com/2021/09/16/i-sing-the-body-electric-5-sf-works-about-
Post by Ted Nolan <tednolan>
Post by Michael F. Stemper
Post by Michael F. Stemper
Post by James Nicoll
sex
-and-technology/
Jander Panell[1] from _The Robots of Dawn_ wasn't on the list, and
this is probably right, since he wasn't built for such purposes.
errm... it’s a _robot_. Anything not built in, or retrofitted later, isn't
not there. if the robot had the, ahem, required hardware, then it _was_ built
for such purposes, or was at the least fitted with aftermarket mods.
Solaria made *humaniform* robots. This doesn't mean that they were built
as sex toys, any more than the fact that my car has a glove box means
that it was built as a glove storage device.
As I recall, Daneel could "eat"
design decision and extra manufacturing effort, specifically so that a robot
could _appear_ human and not cause problems with the bigots on the
germ-infested hell planet. So that superior forms of life (Spacers) didn’t
have to get too close to the infectious hordes. Think of it as Spacer social
distancing.
Post by Ted Nolan <tednolan>
and Calvin's "Liar" was attractive,
err... no. the _robot_ wasn’t the object of Susan Calvin’s attraction.
Post by Ted Nolan <tednolan>
so
it's not like it wasn't foreshadowed.
Sorry, wrong Asimov story. I meant "Satisfaction Guaranteed".
--
columbiaclosings.com
What's not in Columbia anymore..
Wolffan
2021-09-21 12:08:25 UTC
Reply
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Post by Michael F. Stemper
Post by Michael F. Stemper
Post by James Nicoll
I Sing the Body Electric: 5 SF Works About Sex and Technology
https://www.tor.com/2021/09/16/i-sing-the-body-electric-5-sf-works-about-s
ex
-and-technology/
Jander Panell[1] from _The Robots of Dawn_ wasn't on the list, and
this is probably right, since he wasn't built for such purposes.
errm... it’s a _robot_. Anything not built in, or retrofitted later, isn't
not there. if the robot had the, ahem, required hardware, then it _was_ built
for such purposes, or was at the least fitted with aftermarket mods.
Solaria made *humaniform* robots. This doesn't mean that they were built
as sex toys, any more than the fact that my car has a glove box means
that it was built as a glove storage device.
Your analogy falls flat.

If a robot was made to be capable of having sex, major design decisions and
hardware and, especially, software would have had to be made. A glove box
can, by it’s very existence, be used for multiple purposes, usually
involving the storage of small items. A penis (or vagina) on a robot has one
possible use. (Well, two, if you count decoration.) The robot’s designers
would be adding a dildo (or a fleshlight. or both.) to the basic chassis...
and, like all other parts on the robot, would require manufacturing effort to
build and software to make functional. Robots, even robots with dildos and/or
fleshlights, have no gender. Without software support they will not operate
sexually. They can be used as sex toys, but so can vacuum cleaners and
milking machines (Google is your friend for examples, I saw a few by accident
and I’m _not_ going looking again, some of those pix were... sanguinary. I
can’t imagine what the idiots in question were thinking.) and so can
various other objects. (Google is your friend there too.) Without software
support a robot with a dildo/fleshlight is just a very large, very expensive,
self-propelled masturbation machine... and such robots would not be built
without _extensive_ software support, or the manufacturer would have just
created a whole new class of very expensive liability lawsuits. Either the
‘humaniform’ robots are as smooth in the crotch as Ken and Barbie or they
have lots of software, if only to keep the vendor out of court.

So, yeah, either it’s not equipped or it _was_ built with having sex toy
usage in mind. And retrofiting sex toy packages would also require software
support. There was a reason why I pointed to the graphic... which you
snipped.
Jack Bohn
2021-09-21 14:46:54 UTC
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Post by Wolffan
Without software
support a robot with a dildo/fleshlight is just a very large, very expensive,
self-propelled masturbation machine... and such robots would not be built
without _extensive_ software support, or the manufacturer would have just
created a whole new class of very expensive liability lawsuits.
Worse or not as bad as self-driving cars?
What is the sex equivalent of the Trolley Problem?
--
-Jack
Dorothy J Heydt
2021-09-21 15:49:30 UTC
Reply
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Post by Jack Bohn
Post by Wolffan
Without software
support a robot with a dildo/fleshlight is just a very large, very expensive,
self-propelled masturbation machine... and such robots would not be built
without _extensive_ software support, or the manufacturer would have just
created a whole new class of very expensive liability lawsuits.
Worse or not as bad as self-driving cars?
What is the sex equivalent of the Trolley Problem?
Dunno. But there's a letter to the sex experts on Slate at
present,* a man saying that his current partner is really good at
what she does, but he's afraid he may be hurting her.

https://slate.com/human-interest/2021/09/sex-health-kink-new-relationship-advice.html

_______
*Because Slate has a little of everything.
--
Dorothy J. Heydt
Vallejo, California
djheydt at gmail dot com
Www.kithrup.com/~djheydt/
Robert Carnegie
2021-09-21 20:55:09 UTC
Reply
Permalink
Post by Wolffan
Post by Michael F. Stemper
Post by Michael F. Stemper
Post by James Nicoll
I Sing the Body Electric: 5 SF Works About Sex and Technology
https://www.tor.com/2021/09/16/i-sing-the-body-electric-5-sf-works-about-s
ex
-and-technology/
Jander Panell[1] from _The Robots of Dawn_ wasn't on the list, and
this is probably right, since he wasn't built for such purposes.
errm... it’s a _robot_. Anything not built in, or retrofitted later, isn't
not there. if the robot had the, ahem, required hardware, then it _was_ built
for such purposes, or was at the least fitted with aftermarket mods.
Solaria made *humaniform* robots. This doesn't mean that they were built
as sex toys, any more than the fact that my car has a glove box means
that it was built as a glove storage device.
Your analogy falls flat.
If a robot was made to be capable of having sex, major design decisions and
hardware and, especially, software would have had to be made. A glove box
can, by it’s very existence, be used for multiple purposes, usually
involving the storage of small items. A penis (or vagina) on a robot has one
possible use. (Well, two, if you count decoration.) The robot’s designers
would be adding a dildo (or a fleshlight. or both.) to the basic chassis...
and, like all other parts on the robot, would require manufacturing effort to
build and software to make functional. Robots, even robots with dildos and/or
fleshlights, have no gender. Without software support they will not operate
sexually. They can be used as sex toys, but so can vacuum cleaners and
milking machines (Google is your friend for examples, I saw a few by accident
and I’m _not_ going looking again, some of those pix were... sanguinary. I
can’t imagine what the idiots in question were thinking.) and so can
various other objects. (Google is your friend there too.) Without software
support a robot with a dildo/fleshlight is just a very large, very expensive,
self-propelled masturbation machine... and such robots would not be built
without _extensive_ software support, or the manufacturer would have just
created a whole new class of very expensive liability lawsuits. Either the
‘humaniform’ robots are as smooth in the crotch as Ken and Barbie or they
have lots of software, if only to keep the vendor out of court.
So, yeah, either it’s not equipped or it _was_ built with having sex toy
usage in mind. And retrofiting sex toy packages would also require software
support. There was a reason why I pointed to the graphic... which you
snipped.
Sex doesn't /have/ to be topological. Maybe the
robot can just move its hands and fingers really fast.
Michael F. Stemper
2021-09-23 20:01:57 UTC
Reply
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Post by Wolffan
Post by Michael F. Stemper
Post by Michael F. Stemper
Jander Panell[1] from _The Robots of Dawn_ wasn't on the list, and
this is probably right, since he wasn't built for such purposes.
errm... it’s a _robot_. Anything not built in, or retrofitted later, isn't
not there. if the robot had the, ahem, required hardware, then it _was_ built
for such purposes, or was at the least fitted with aftermarket mods.
Solaria made *humaniform* robots. This doesn't mean that they were built
as sex toys, any more than the fact that my car has a glove box means
that it was built as a glove storage device.
Your analogy falls flat.
If a robot was made to be capable of having sex, major design decisions and
hardware and, especially, software would have had to be made.
How about some textev?

In Chapter 22 of _The Robots of Dawn_, Dr. Han Fastolfe tells
Lije Baley the importance of humaniform robots for giving a
robot the mind of a human being:

"[...] To imitate a human brain, when I know almost nothing
about the workings of the human brain, needs an intuitive
leap--something that feels to me like poetry. And the same
intuitive leap that would give me the humaniform positronic
brain should surely give me a new access of knowledge about
the human brain itself. That was my belief--that through
humaniformity I might take at least a small step toward
the psychohistory I told you about."

[...]

"And if I succeeded in working out a theoretical structure
that would imply a humaniform positronic brain, I would
need a humaniform body to place it in. The brain does not
exist by itself, you understand. It interacts with the body,
so that a humaniform brain in a nonhumaniform body would
become, to an extent, itself nonhuman."

So Fastolfe wanted Jander Panell to be as close to human as
possible to further his research into psychology and potentially
towards development of psychohistory.

Genitalia seem to be significant influencers of humans, so
omitting them would have made Jander unsuitable for Fastolfe's
purposes.
--
Michael F. Stemper
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