There was a time in the not too distant past that most science fiction and horror films, books and graphic novels were warning us about how terrifying new technology would be in the future. There were films like ‘Robocop’, ‘The Terminator‘ and ‘The Matrix‘ which illustrated a world where technology could be our undoing with machines controlling us and carrying out justice.
It can be argued that these precautionary tales were preparing us for the mechanized death that can be brought on by the use of drones and now it is being revealed that robot cops are going to be a reality in just one to two years.
Six years ago, before drones were part of the contemporary conversation conversation there was an experimental robot used in Perm, Russia known as the R Bot 001. It was a 550 pound enforcer that looked like an upright bullet or rocket getting around on four tires. Its main function is to monitor the streets for crime using its five video cameras. It has a button that citizens can press to contact the police station in times of need, and it even has the ability to deliver simple orders, like telling drunken pedestrians to go home and sober up.
The Perm police haven’t released much more information about the robotic officer, possibly because R Bot 001′s debut was less than stellar. A few hours after hitting the streets, the robot encountered some stormy weather. Unfortunately, the robot’s casing wasn’t waterproof. Water leaked into the robot, shorting out its electrical system. Officers had to retrieve R Bot 001 and bring it back for repairs.
While police robots are not autonomous and most of them do not seem to be anthropomorphic, the thought of a robotic or mechanized police force is a frightening one because of the stories about how machines can malfunction and, left to their own programming, could see humans as the enemy and from there we would have a war between humans and mechanized monsters.
Times have changed drastically and the debate has continued over the use of drones in law enforcement and the strange charge that the United States government has the power to kill American citizens by remote control.
This is something that at one time was just a science fiction nightmare and with time has become a reality as many of the science fiction stories of a robo-pocalypse seem more and more probable.
As we have now realized that the mechanized threat is looming on the horizon, there is now a new type of nightmare that has always been in the back of people’s minds and we have again embraced it as inevitable.
We are now dealing with the grim reality that no matter how smart we are, no matter how much technology we use to fight wars and enforce laws there is one thing that mankind has always fell prey to and that is an infection or virus that renders an entire population diseased and contagious.
This fear has now been marketed as the zombie apocalypse and there seems to be a deep rooted psychological attraction to the possibility almost to the point of obsession. The zombie apocalypse is not limited to the fear of the walking dead. It has now reached far beyond the plodding walking corpses that give a face to the phenomenon.
The whole mental construct has also created the fear of germs, the prepper movement, and the whole idea of an apocalypse and how you would react if you were facing extreme conditions.
The zombie apocalypse seems to resonate with current anxieties and each time we see the reinvention of a menace or invisible enemy that can invade suburbia.
The invisible enemy is the one that is hardest to fight and the idea of an unseen germ or virus that can change human behavior has always been a useful tool to illustrate philosophical differences and even mental conditions that are not or do not fit in with the agreed upon norms of society.
I think one of the most effective zombies like stories has always been “The Body Snatchers” by Jack Finney. While the movie was inspired by the book, “Invasion of the Body Snatchers” did not used reanimated corpses to make the point, the obvious story was that of how an alien threat existed that somehow entered the mind of the host and eventually an entire town would have their emotions tranquilized.
more here: http://www.groundzeromedia.org/head-full-of-zombie/