Long ago I figured that the biggest advances that would come in the field of human-like robots would be sex robots first, and the general sort of helper robots would follow as a sort of afterthought, in civilian life. In the military, there won’t be really good soldier robots until the sex robots are fully developed and accepted in society first, because the sexbot technology will pave the way for all the rest. Sex is where the money is.

The most advanced sex robots are being made in Japan, where people live packed in like sardines in a can and interest in sex with live partners is fading, to the point that their population is declining. A robot that doesn’t need to share living space and never eats, and is always nice and obedient, perfectly fulfills the Japanese male’s dream of the ideal woman.

Already, sexbots have mobile faces. The eyes move and blink, the faces change expression, the mouths move correctly during speech. The bodies are mobile to a degree and can perform sexually. The only major thing they don’t do yet is stand and walk on their own.

Actual child sex is outlawed in Japan but their comic books and anime are filled with child sex stories, and one Japanese robot manufacturer actually makes child sex dolls. They aren’t robots but no doubt that’s coming, and already some people in Canada are calling for them to be outlawed. The case will undoubtedly be made that allowing pedophiles to have sex with the dolls to satisfy their fantasies will prevent many actual attacks on children, so we have that mess to look forward to in our court systems some day.

A whole new pile of laws is going to be fought over and ultimately enacted here and in Europe over not just sex robots but all robots as this technology progresses and robots become more a part of our daily lives. For instance, at what point is a robot so autonomous that no human is responsible for it’s behavior? Do you imprison a robot that commits a crime, or just turn it off? Can some jobs be prohibited to keep robots from taking jobs from humans? Will robots have to be marked in some way so people don’t mistake them for real humans? What about manufacturer liability? Owner liability? What about insurance? Licensing and registration?

There’s going to be such a big bureaucracy that gets created over robots that a whole new field of specialty lawyers will arise to deal with the volumes of new laws that will be written. And just when you thought that the Internet was the ultimate new career opportunity.

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