Prophets of Science Fiction: Season 1, Episode 5

Isaac Asimov (1 Feb. 2012)

TV Episode  |   |  Documentary
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Isaac Asimov dreamed of a better future where robots can do mankind's dirty work. His I, Robot stories led to the creation of real-life industrial robots--and inspired generations to ... See full summary »



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Title: Isaac Asimov (01 Feb 2012)

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Episode credited cast:
Narrator (voice)
Colin Angle ...
Himself - CEO / Chairman, iRobot
Isaac Asimov ...
Himself (archive footage)
Himself (archive footage)
David Brin ...
Himself - Futurist
John W. Campbell Jr. ...
Himself - Editor, Astounding Science Fiction Magazine (archive footage)
Himself - Author
Lady in Pink
Himself - Writer
Himself - Screenwriter
Himself (archive footage)
Himself - Theoretical Physicist
Himself (archive footage)
Maja Mataric ...
Herself - Professor of Computer Science, University of Southern California


Isaac Asimov dreamed of a better future where robots can do mankind's dirty work. His I, Robot stories led to the creation of real-life industrial robots--and inspired generations to embrace the science and technology of a robo-friendly world. Written by Anonymous

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1 February 2012 (USA)  »

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Aid, enemy... or replacement?
18 November 2013 | by (Denmark) – See all my reviews

This documentary consists of expert(with fellow creators, Hollywood and otherwise, and those who have helped bring his work into the real world) interviews, film clips, real footage, computer simulations(of what could not otherwise be shown, and that which remains theory) and narration. It is about author Isaac Asimov, perhaps mostly known for his sci-fi, but he also wrote about science, among many other non-fiction subjects.

Covered are that robots(the main focus throughout - of this, as well as his body of work), in his view, are potentially helpful – not threatening, as it so far had been perceived – in spite of xenophobia, "nannies", an operating system, outer space colonization, trans-humanism/cyborgs(prosthetic limbs), when does a machine earn human status and deserve equal rights and the singularity(we and they evolve until we are "one").

His optimism always guiding him, he explored whether they can have emotions and how they will react to/deal with them, the 3 laws of robotics(and their potential weaknesses! Certainly, they are crafted with great intent but they don't always work out, pointing to that rules have to be complex, take into account many finer details) and the possibility of "brainwashing" them to allow them to kill people. This also goes into questions raised by that, such as if they can take away jobs(or are they merely vital tools, assisting others in important work like surgery?) and military applications(something he would not have approved of).

There is some disturbing content, and a little bloody violence in this. I recommend this to any fan of the man. 8/10

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