Mind Matters Natural and Artificial Intelligence News and Analysis
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The head of a cyborg with wires on a gray background.
The head of a cyborg with wires on a gray background.

Sci Fi Saturday: Kiko: A Great Short But Key Questions Unanswered

A lonely retail service robot longs for a world beyond her store

“Kiko,” (9:20 min) by Jamil Munoz, tells the tale of a lonely retail service android who longs for a world beyond her store.

Her signature line, “Goodnight, Charlie,” is priceless, as she is then all alone again, a mere as part of the business equipment.

It’s an agreeable short (no spoilers, except that the kid who comes to her rescue is great).

The android is wholly believable but the film never addresses the question of how the proprietor of “Charlie’s” computer retail store could have created or acquired a robot that had attributes like wanting a different type of life.

A farmer can’t “create” a horse who wants to go to university. Even if the farmer could create a horse, could it be a horse that wants to go to university? What are we missing here?


Other reviews from the “We are but DUST” files:

Sci-fi Saturday: What if next-stage evolution children appear?A sci-fi short from Sri Lanka looks at the possibilities. The story is very well done as a parable of the social risks of continuous internal warfare.

Sci-Fi Saturday: Can parents get back a dead child as an android? They aren’t even united in their grief; they just think they must “do something” to get back a facsimile of what they remember. They have no philosophical or spiritual resources to fall back on in order to avoid this dead end.

Sci-Fi Saturday film: The robot tries to learn about grief An elderly woman buys a robot to help her when she finds herself all alone, due to tragedy. Investigating the woman’s unhappiness, the robot discovers more than it was, perhaps, intended to know.

Sci-Fi Saturday film: “Speed of Time” at DUST A computer nerd writing a pizza delivery program discovers that his work is way more important than he, or anyone, thought. Imagine what happens when an accomplished ground warrior busts in from another time on a quiet family at the breakfast table…

Sci-Fi Saturday film: “Alone” at DUST. Space engineer Kaya Torres, the only survivor of a black hole, contacts an “interstellar penpal” to keep her company until she dies. She manages a desperate escape but then experiences one of the astonishing implications of time travel.

Sci-Fi Saturday film: “The Beacon” at DUST. Refreshingly realistic, especially the harrowing Arctic encounter where the grieving husband finds out what really happened. Not to be missed is Mark’s encounter with the bureaucrat from hell.


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Sci Fi Saturday: Kiko: A Great Short But Key Questions Unanswered