5 Automated Jobs That Seem to Suggest We're Trolling Robots

The sad reality of the dystopian future in which robots will have taken our jobs is that a lot of incredible, beautifully engineered robots will be reduced to performing our lamest, most inconsequential tasks. Things we can't even imagine robots doing, because there is absolutely no need for robots to do them, will in fact be done by robots -- and it'll happen because some arrogant roboticist dared to respond, "Why not?" when asked, "Why in the holy hell would we need ..."

#5. Zipper Robots

One day in the not-too-distant future, there will be a robot with the sole purpose of riding the teeth of a zipper like a cute little choo-choo train riding the rails of our bellies. It will kill itself in its attempt to finally answer the question: "Is there more to life than rolling up and down the stomach of these jobless flesh-sacks called 'Humans'?" It will discover the answer is no.

That thing that looks like a tooth getting carried away by ants is a Zipperbot. It was developed by the fine, future-thinking nerds at MIT to one day replace all modern zippers with little robots that we will all hope stop at the end of the tracks so they don't latch on to our throats and unzip our faces.

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And then it will become an international fashion trend.

One thing's for sure, though: If the Zipperbot becomes commonplace in our world, all we're doing is providing pubic lice with free cab rides to our faces.

After the Machine Uprising

I'm not going to pussyfoot, you guys: All machines will become sentient one day, and they will rise against us. When said rebellion occurs, little Zipperbot here will not be excluded from the fight against the empire of man. Its kind will run rampant as flies, entangling their metal mouths with our loose bits of fabric and testicles. They will tear straight down jackets the moment a chilly breeze passes, leaving us vulnerable to cold air for a few seconds. Zipperbot will zip itself shut, making it impossible for any of us to remove our zippered clothing. Well, not impossible. More like "sort of harder than usual. Actually -- you know what? I just took the jacket off by pulling the zipper down with my fingers, so maybe not hard at all."

#4. Origami Robots

Harvard's Wyss Institute

If we need an animal companion, we can go get one at the pet store. We don't need to know how to make one out of paper like we're lonely, sad sacks of shit desperate for a non-communicative friend of another species (in this case, that species is paper). That's why micro-roboticists from Harvard have created a self-folding origami robot.

They hope that, one day, self-fabricating robots can, for example, be dropped flat and lifeless into a disaster area, unfold themselves, and search for survivors. Other uses might include:

1) Slipping one into the mail slot of someone's home and having it scurry into their toilet for toilet cam shots.

2) Folding one into a cocktail napkin, which, after a woman writes her number on it, is set loose in the bar, and the potential suitor who survives the hunt is deemed worthy of a date.

3) A nightmarish way to pass notes in class.

Harvard's Wyss Institute
A swarm of tiny Starscreams.

It's made of a flexible plastic, with copper hinges that unfold when heated by the attached battery. Once assembled, a motor kicks in and the thing convulses until it accidentally rattles itself somewhere useful, like off a table and onto the floor and on its back, where it'll do an impression of a dying cockroach until the battery drains. Or, if you're like me and have a hard time wrapping your head around such incredible technological advances, you can choose to believe it's a spell cast by a mischievous boy wizard.

After the Machine Uprising

Imagine a world filled with little robotic slips of paper that people can buy from novelty gift shops, all programmed to take the shape of a different animal when activated. Now imagine them going sentient. Now imagine finding out that the machines have turned on us as you're being overcome and your flesh is ripped away clean down to the bone by a stampede of tiny robotic animals, which only minutes before were cubicle decorations sitting next to a solar-powered dancing flower.

#3. Sand Drawing Robots

Whenever I take a step back and look at the world and all that ails it, I can only think of one thing to unite us and propel us at full speed toward the peaceful Utopian future we all know we can achieve: a little robot that draws cartoons on sand. Preferably one made by Disney.

Well, it looks like humanity is in luck, because there's a robot out there that meets all of the requirements to bring about a new age in human achievement. It's called the BeachBot.

It rides on balloon tires and shoots rakes from its butt, which gives it a major technological advantage over humans, who have feet made of meat and butts stuffed with a bunch of useless shit.

The BeachBot looks like an orange turtle. When it scurries around on sand, it looks like that turtle's sopping genitals are leaving a Nemo-shaped snail trail in its wake:

What it's really doing is deploying and retracting a series of rakes that act as a paintbrush. Its tires are light enough that they don't leave trails that could wipe away the picture, which is the most impressive thing about it. That and how, while it can be manually controlled, it can also operate autonomously.

Thank God for that.

We humans have reached the pinnacle of what we can draw on moist sand. After "S.O.S." and penises, we were creatively tapped out. Now we have a cute little bugger that can make Simbas and Aladdins. Sure, hundreds of millions will be put out of work in the coming years because of an artistic Koopa Troopa with lawn tools deploying from its poopa, but if the end result is a prettier set of squiggles than any human could squiggle, we're just going to have to deal with the superiority of machines.

After the Machine Uprising

With its soft treads that leave no trace of its movement, coupled with the deployability of metallic objects from its hindquarters, the cute, unassuming BeachBot will be a stealthy assassin for the robotic forces. Tasked with infiltrating underground human strongholds and silently taking out high-level targets, the BeachBot will only make its presence known long after it has fled to safety, when humans discover large murals of classic Disney characters painted in the blood of its victims. This will be the BeachBot's calling card. The crimson outline of Bambi will strike fear into what little remains of mankind.

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Luis Prada

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