Fine Arts Component

For this component, I will discuss another medium for representing my theme.  I have selected the song "One More Robot - Sympathy 3000-21" by The Flaming Lips and reproduced the lyrics here.  The explanation of its relevance is below.


"One More Robot - Sympathy 3000-21" by The Flaming Lips

Unit three thousand twenty one is warning
Makes a humming sound - when its circuits
Duplicate emotions - and a sense of coldness detaches
As it tries to comfort your sadness -

One more robot learns to be something more than
A machine - when it tries the way it does - make it seem
Like it can love -
Cause it's hard to say what's real - when you know the
Why you feel - is it wrong to think it's love
When it tries the way it does...

Feeling a synthetic kind of love
Dreaming a sympathetic wish -
As the lights blink faster and brighter -

One more robot learns to be something more than
A machine - when it tries the way it does - make it seem
Like it can love -
Cause it's hard to say what's real - when you know the
Why you feel - is it wrong to think it's love
When it tries the way it does...


On the surface, this song appears to be about a robot who tries so hard to love with his synthetic emotions.  Here is the basic theme of appearance v. reality: could what this robot feel be considered love?  But the point behind it all is to explain that there really is no difference, and that a robot can be taught to love.  The simple definition of love, trying to comfort a friend, being able to dream, can be implemented into a computer algorithm and integrated into the circuits of a machine.  So why would we, we humans, disagree that this is real love?  Because it comes from a machine.  What is ironic, is that we have no reason to disagree--empirically, what the machine is doing is exactly our definition of love.  We humans are just unstable beings who are afraid of something not ourselves.  The Flaming Lips uses science fiction to create this vessel, this robot, to deliver this theme.


Revised: June 13, 2003 .