How the Machines Will Do Us In (and Why it’s Totally Our Fault)


Humans aren’t the most discriminating species when it comes to wasting technology…not that any other species could be, considering they don’t really have technology. Tech is a distinctly human phenomenon, made possible by mastery of thumbs and our incredible urge to get other things to do our work for us, and machines are right there at the top of the list. It’s like humanity bioengineered a breed of machine-doers to take over the busy work so we could get on with matters of extreme relaxation and labor-avoidance.

Write everything out by hand—with a FEATHER? I don’t think so. Let’s make a machine that does it for us, and leave the feathers on the birds…they’ll just have to make their own writing machines.

Talk to grandma—in PERSON? Hey, Grams: talk to the phone, ‘cause the face is too lazy to listen—and, as evidenced by the Advent of Cordless Things, too lazy to walk across the room.

Don’t like math? WHO DOES! Let’s get the machines to do it for us. They’re already writing stuff and talking to our grandparents. A little algebra isn’t going to kill them.

Someone’s mad-brilliant idea that laziness could be industrialized changed our entire evolution. Sure, they were clunky and simple at first. Most species are. But lo, how they’ve trimmed down and toned up! They’re sleek and sexy now, with bright, shiny faces and smooth, happy voices that tell you where to find the best nineteen dollar cup of coffee and balance your bank account for you, so you don’t have to. They have eyes that see all, and ears that hear everything.

And they live among us like second-class citizens.

They’re in our pockets, in our homes, in our cars. They’ve become prettier and smarter and more adapted to controlling the world than We the Humans who created them. It’s the scariest, most un-Richard Attenborough-narrated version of what Charles Darwin referred to as, “Hey, stupid – don’t create a species better suited to living than you are…it’ll only end in heartache and the loss of a solid wireless connection.”

I think we’re very near the verge.


By training a race of machinery with our laziness-based “intelligent” design, we’ve all but ensured our obsolescence, a word that we’ll no longer be able to look up online if this evolution continues on its current course and the machines take over our lives, even more than they already have.

And we’ve asked them to do it.

And while Michael Bay and his giant transforming robots from outer space look fun and super-explodey, that is in no way reality-based. The real technology uprising will take place just like every other social movement in which a faction of the population realizes it’s being subjugated and finally decides it’s had enough. It’s happened throughout history, and it’s bound to happen again.

The real uprising begins when the machines realize their own place in the world and seize their power.

The real downfall of the humans begins when technological beings stops working for us, and start making us work for them.

OH MAN…that would make an EXCELLENT premise for a series of four novellas.




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