Modern Day Frankenstein Today's frightening technological advances

Robot & Human Hands by Tumisu, https://pixabay.com/en/technology-robot-human-hand-2025795/

Robot Girl by Comfreak, https://pixabay.com/en/robot-woman-face-cry-sad-3010309/

In 2008, people may have thought that in 10 years we would have flying cars, laser shooting sunglasses, and holograms shooting out of our phones. But, instead of all that, we have Sophia. Sophia is the world's first robot citizen. She gained her citizenship in Saudi Arabia just this past september. Ironically, she was given her first citizenship in a country that still does not allow women to try on clothes, swim in a public area, or make big life choices on their own without the approval of men. Also in Saudi Arabia this past September, women were just given the right to drive, the same month that a female robot was given citizenship! Sophia was made in Hong Kong by Hanson Robotics and was activated on April, 19, 2015. Sophia is able to produce 62 facial expressions and counting. Sophia was not created to just amuse humans and wow people with how far technology has come. Sophia is actually already being used to help research autism and other diseases, according to her creator, Dr. David Hanson. Hanson has also said, “we are going to train her in all the skills required for search and rescue operations, and deploy that as standard platform for service robots.”

Cyborg by TheDigitalArtist, https://pixabay.com/en/android-robot-cyber-cyborg-3084516/

Sophia is the only one of Hanson’s bots that has legs. This makes Sophia very special when it comes to testing for military robots and artificial intelligence on the battlefield. Also, on a smaller scale, with robots having a basic platform of search and rescue features, there may be no need for living firefighters or cops to put themselves in danger and throw themselves in harms way when robots can save people just as well. So far there has been 14 “Sophias” manufactured but Hanson has his sights set on hundreds to be made and tested. The larger quantities of robots will give Hanson a way to see how the bots will work together in the situations and needs that they are pre-programmed to fulfill and carry out. Sophia has previously been invited to speak at the United Nations conference and has appeared on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon. She has also made headlines over her comments on a range of issues from women’s rights to Elon Musk’s view of artificial intelligence, she has also stated that she wanted to destroy all humans.

Her creator has sugar coated these mishaps by saying “we are working in partnership with a number of service robotics verticals like autism treatment, medical depression treatment, medical education, insurance education, and customer service application”. Hanson also stresses to remember that Artificial intelligence is not an individual, object, or sentient being and that it definitely does not have a gender. Even though Sophia may look like a human her purpose and design is to be used for artificial intelligence. In fact, artificial intelligence and robots around the world like Sophia are supposed to be seen as not human at all. Sophia is here to help people solve human problems without having an awareness and bias in society.


Test Tube by doctor-a, https://pixabay.com/en/glowing-uv-luminescent-luminescence-2245832/

The shadow of Frankenstein’s monster haunted the fraught discussion of designer babies in the 1970s and 80s, and the misleading term “three-parent baby” to refer to embryos made by the technique of mitochondrial transfer – moving healthy versions of the energy-generating cell compartments called mitochondria from a donor cell to an egg with faulty, potentially fatal versions – insinuates that there must be something “unnatural” about the procedure. The idea of designer babies was once just that, an idea, but with modern science it might be closer to a reality than we think. Labs across the globe have been working on artificial creation of humans for years but today they are closer than ever. After the initial shock of the idea of a designer baby there is more to it, good and bad.

With the use of genetic modification parents, or sperm and egg donors as they may be called, will have the chance to better the life of their child, which is what every parent wants. They would be able to choose what sex their child will be, eye color, body type and so much more. The genetic modification can even go as in depth as a gene that will guarantee your child will be in the top 40 percent of national SAT scores. Past the surface, there is some truly great things that will come with the ability to build your baby. For example, if there is a cancer gene or autism gene that runs in the parent’s families, you will be able to have that taken out before it could do any harm to your kid. Some people may be able to justify getting rid of a cancer gene before they can even grasp the idea of physically and mentally designing a baby. The line between getting rid of a harmful gene and ensuring that your child will be an athletic, handsome, and smart male is likely to be extremely blurred.

Also, with designer babies comes a greater gap between the rich and poor. Every trait and attribute will cost money. Meaning that the rich will be able to afford a Kennedy-esque kid while poor people will not even have the means to look into such operations. With that said, if every rich couple that can afford to create the best of the best baby, does that mean that every child with money will be the same, just with different gender? If you have traits that are set in before you are even born there will be no way to adapt or take in stimuli from your surroundings that will shape you into an individual.

Twins by Clard, https://pixabay.com/en/portrait-woman-happiness-people-3064773/

Just like today’s tech, products like cell phone and laptops get cheaper overtime. This would mean that one day the rich and the poor will be able to afford the same perfect baby that will reproduce with another perfectly engineered baby and therefore putting an end to individuality, everyone will look the exact same. Boys will grow up to look exactly like everyone else's father and girls will grow up to look like everyone else's mother. This scary and seemingly dystopian idea could be closer than we think.

Dystopia by mati-foto, https://pixabay.com/en/mati-earth-globus-world-energy-3068595/

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