babble home
rabble.ca - news for the rest of us
today's active topics


Post New Topic  Post A Reply
FAQ | Forum Home
  next oldest topic   next newest topic
» babble   » right brain babble   » culture   » Trying to remember a story from my childhood

Email this thread to someone!    
Author Topic: Trying to remember a story from my childhood
Papal Bull
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 7050

posted 02 April 2006 05:51 AM      Profile for Papal Bull   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I remember back in Grade 2 we had these readers that the teacher gave out. In one of them there is a story about how a robot falls from the sky. Or falls of a cliff. Either way...his parts go about and pick up other pieces and gradually become more complex. His fingers gather together, forming the hand, which grabs an eye which allows him to look for other parts. I remember really liking this story. I was wondering if any of the babblers 'round these parts have heard of this little tale.
From: Vatican's best darned ranch | Registered: Oct 2004  |  IP: Logged
Reality. Bites.
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 6718

posted 02 April 2006 06:54 AM      Profile for Reality. Bites.        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Back when I was in grade 2, robots hadn't even been invented in fiction.

One science fiction story I do remember from school though, I read in about grade 7. It envisioned the calculator becoming ubiquitous. When I read the story hand-held calculators didn't exist yet. In this future society math had been forgotten not only by cashiers, but also by scientists. Someone "invented" math and had to sell the concept to skeptical people who questioned how he could be sure that 2 + 2 would always be 4, but could see the possibilities in replacing computers with humans, such as on a space mission.


From: Gone for good | Registered: Aug 2004  |  IP: Logged
Boom Boom
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 7791

posted 02 April 2006 10:02 AM      Profile for Boom Boom     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
In the 1950's I had a metal model robot from the 1930's, wish I had kept it - it'd be worth a mint today. This older link may be of interest to some: "The debate about whether or not worker machines should replace people is very old. Over 75 years ago, in 1920, a Czech playwright named Karel Capek wrote a play that explored this very issue. The play, called R.U.R: Rossum's Universal Robots, is considered one of the very earliest works of Science Fiction. It is also famous for another reason: it is from this play we get the word "robot," which comes from the Czech word "robota." In the Czech language, robota literally means "forced work or labor."
From: Make the rich pay! | Registered: Dec 2004  |  IP: Logged
Boom Boom
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 7791

posted 02 April 2006 10:05 AM      Profile for Boom Boom     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Originally posted by Papal Bull:
I remember back in Grade 2 we had these readers that the teacher gave out. In one of them there is a story about how a robot falls from the sky. Or falls of a cliff. Either way...his parts go about and pick up other pieces and gradually become more complex.
-
I don't remember that particular one, but two years ago TMN.ca was showing a robot movie in b/w that was totally awesome - about a robot from outer space I believe. I'll hunt around for the link.

ETA: Here it is: The Iron Giant (1999) A boy makes friends with an innocent alien giant robot that a paranoid government agent wants to destroy.

[ 02 April 2006: Message edited by: Boom Boom ]


From: Make the rich pay! | Registered: Dec 2004  |  IP: Logged
goyanamasu
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 12173

posted 02 April 2006 10:21 AM      Profile for goyanamasu     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Charlie Chaplin in Modern Times gives brilliant cameos of a worker caught up in the machine.
The worker becomes the robot. Making a film precious and radical simultaneously using robot themes, now a genre seen in animation, has not been portrayed better by anyone after Chaplin.
One robot there is the dentist chair thing that feeds the worker efficiently, with speed and scientifically but to watch Chaplin almost lose his life strapped in is a real scream.
So? I said nothing new. I'll bet a DVD set of Chaplin films still sells well at over $40 today.

From: End Arbitrary Management Style Now | Registered: Mar 2006  |  IP: Logged
Boom Boom
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 7791

posted 02 April 2006 10:30 AM      Profile for Boom Boom     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Yeah - "Modern Times" is a Chaplin classic - seen it many times.
From: Make the rich pay! | Registered: Dec 2004  |  IP: Logged
voice of the damned
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 6943

posted 02 April 2006 12:06 PM      Profile for voice of the damned     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
When I was just a tot, my mom took me to Woodward's at Southgate Mall, where they had this giant robot called Robbie The Robot. When I walked up to him, he said words that I remember to be "Hello little boy, what do you do?"(I'm sure it was "how do you do") I got really scared and ran and hid out in one of those circular clothing racks.

I think what scared me was not that he was a robot but that he was talking to ME personally. Something about that kinda freaked me out. I got a similar sense of unease from the scene in Mary Poppins when Dick Van Dyke looks out at the audience and says hello.

[ 02 April 2006: Message edited by: voice of the damned ]


From: Asia | Registered: Sep 2004  |  IP: Logged
Boom Boom
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 7791

posted 02 April 2006 12:40 PM      Profile for Boom Boom     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I apologise in advance for the thread drift, but does anyone here have firsthand experience with the new range of 'family' robots coming from Japan? IIRC, both Sony and Honda are coming out with small, (almost) affordable robots for the home that are more toys than appliances, although there's a small robo-vacuum that's useful.

ETA: Update on SONY and Honda home robots

Although Sony's Aibo and Qrio were among the first and most popular robots of their kind, other bi-peds, such as Honda's Asimo, have managed to overshadow Sony's products, said Musser, a robotics enthusiast, former University of Missouri professor and current owner of Eyebits Studios.

[ 02 April 2006: Message edited by: Boom Boom ]


From: Make the rich pay! | Registered: Dec 2004  |  IP: Logged
maestro
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 7842

posted 02 April 2006 03:58 PM      Profile for maestro     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Reality. Bites.:
Back when I was in grade 2, robots hadn't even been invented in fiction.

One science fiction story I do remember from school though, I read in about grade 7. It envisioned the calculator becoming ubiquitous. When I read the story hand-held calculators didn't exist yet. In this future society math had been forgotten not only by cashiers, but also by scientists. Someone "invented" math and had to sell the concept to skeptical people who questioned how he could be sure that 2 + 2 would always be 4, but could see the possibilities in replacing computers with humans, such as on a space mission.


Isaac Asimov wrote a short story with that theme called "The Feeling Of Power". Here's the last bit from that story:

quote:
They stood over the grave of the little Technician while tribute was paid to the greatness of his discovery.

Programmer Shuman bowed his head along with the rest of them but remained unmoved. The Technician had done his share and was no longer needed, after all. He might have started graphitics, but now that it had started, it would carry on by itself overwhelmingly, triumphantly, until manned missiles were possible with who knew what else.

Nine times seven, thought Shuman with deep satisfaction, is sixty-three, and I don't need a computer to tell me so. The computer is in my own head.


Here's another quote from that story, which shows how astute Asimov was:

quote:
The President of the Terrestrial Federation had grown haggard in office and, in private, he allowed a look of settled melancholy to appear on his sensitive features. The Denebian war, after its early start of vast movement and great popularity, had trickled down into a sordid matter of maneuver and counter-maneuver, the discontent rising steadily on Earth.

Remind you of anything...

And it was amazing the feeling of power that gave him.

[ 02 April 2006: Message edited by: maestro ]


From: Vancouver | Registered: Jan 2005  |  IP: Logged
Andy (Andrew)
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 10884

posted 02 April 2006 05:57 PM      Profile for Andy (Andrew)   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Voice of the Damned you know Woodwards and the Robot are before I was born but I've heard about that robot from my Uncle. I live 10 minutes from southgate mall.
From: Alberta | Registered: Nov 2005  |  IP: Logged
Hephaestion
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 4795

posted 02 April 2006 06:17 PM      Profile for Hephaestion   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
The Iron Giant could *crush* Charlie Chaplain.


From: goodbye... :-( | Registered: Dec 2003  |  IP: Logged
Boom Boom
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 7791

posted 02 April 2006 06:52 PM      Profile for Boom Boom     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Oh, no doubt. But Chaplin was funnier.
From: Make the rich pay! | Registered: Dec 2004  |  IP: Logged
Wee Mousie
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 12266

posted 02 April 2006 11:32 PM      Profile for Wee Mousie     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Jeeze, Reality. Bites., just how old are you!?!?!?

As Boom Boom mentioned, Karel Capek wrote the play, R.U.R. (Rossum's Universal Robots), in 1920 and it was performed in 1921.



Isaac Asimov, of course, was the prime mover behind the popularising of robots, beginning with his I, Robot series of short stories.



The first robot to make an impression on my imagination (though not in person like VotD) was

Robbie the Robot who I first saw in Forbidden Planet.

Like so many other actors, Robbie became stereotyped,

wound up appearing in endless episodes of Lost In Space

and finally died during a special appearance on Mork And Mindy.


He was followed in my imagination by Mike, in Robert Heinlein’s ‘The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress


But, the only robot that I ever saw in the tin, was R2D2, at a personal appearance,


during a film distributors’ exhibition at Toronto, in the early 80's.


From: Mouse Hole | Registered: Mar 2006  |  IP: Logged

All times are Pacific Time  

Post New Topic  Post A Reply Close Topic    Move Topic    Delete Topic next oldest topic   next newest topic
Hop To:

Contact Us | rabble.ca | Policy Statement

Copyright 2001-2008 rabble.ca