Future reality?

Really? but then, I guess, pretty much everything is political.

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Not my goal at least. It’s more a general discussion about society in general, the worldwide society.

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There is a simple, if very distressing, answer for me…
I have an extreme atypical reaction to muscarinic anticholinergics.

Give me a dose of anything like cyclopentolate and both reality and time disappear. At this point for me there’s no past and no future: everything happens in a single protracted instant of time (yes I know that’s an oxymoron, but it’s still how time than appears to me when I’m in that distorted state).

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I take it that isn’t an enjoyable experience…

Perhaps should I change the title of my thread. Instead of « future reality « , maybe « future society « .
If not the thread may diverge into parallel states of consciousness. :upside_down_face:

We’ve been building robots and they’ve been doing jobs people used to do for decades. What will be knew is android robots operating autonomously.

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Yes - but we haven’t been doing it so as to provide goods for free - they are simply substitute human workers. Which is all very fine short term, but in the long term I would hope we would end up with robots and AI doing the more tedious or boring jobs - which is probably most jobs, ultimately - leaving us to do whatever we want (so long as it doesn’t harm anyone else).
Android robots are less necessary - though humanoid robots would be worthwhile. I bow to Asimov in this - it is easier to develop a robot that can work in human situations, so they need to be able to operate things in much the same way that humans do - switching on lights etc. requires hands (or hand equivalents) as a trivial example. (Yes, they could use Bluetooth or some similar system to interact with the house electronics, but the point is still valid). So they would be about human size (to fit through doors, be able to use stairs etc.) and probably legs and arms, for example. But they would not need to look particularly like humans, in most cases.

FAR too closely related to my reaction to scopolamine (a more powerful muscarinic anticholinergic) …
I’ve had 33 years of PTSD after of locked-in syndrome due to that.
Typing it triggers the memory. Trying to describe or even being asked to describe it still triggers flashbacks.

(Over time I’ve found that intentionally triggering the memory slowly reduces my sensitivity to it until someone triggers another flashback.)

Ah - Sorry.

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No probs, the memory is useful, if unpleasant; the flashbacks aren’t.
Typing that above was just the memory, no flashback.

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Sadly I think you’re kidding yourself if you think robots will liberate us from work and enable us to enjoy lives of leisure, or with increased leisure, and even more so if you expect that to be with enough money (or its equivalent) to do whatever we might like (including buying hifi!). My expectation is that the only people who will benefit will be the rich. I.e the rich will continue to get richer, and the poor poorer, and there will be fewer and fewer in the middle. To achieve anything different would take a complete upheaval of our current version of capitalist society - not for an opposite extreme like communism as it has manifested itself in the past, but a radically different approach right across the whole of society. But maybe the swell of feeling against the current polarisation of society and its immorality will grow to achieve that…

This is simply my take on where society is now - where it seems to be heading - and not in any way a political comment


Oh, I know it won’t happen in my lifetime, and probably never - but it would be a very sensible and achievable thing, and an excellent solution to the ‘problem’ of robots and AI taking over our jobs.
OTOH, if robots and AI take over more and more jobs - particularly the more intellectual jobs such as medical doctors, criminal lawyers and judges (sentencing AIs already do a better job, arguably, than judges), architects etc, then the rich(er) people will have more skin in the game, and possibly welcome a life chasing pleasure, rather than just work.

I don’t always agree with you IB, but here at 100%. The robots doing unpleasant tasks will be for the rich people and the poor people will get poorer, because their non specialised jobs will be done by robots. Unemployment will reach stratospheric level.

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Absolutely! And that was what we were led to think when I was a kid at school, and robots were still a thing of science fiction (just).

My late mother became bed bound and had swallowing difficulties which resulted in quite marked salivary drooling which was quite unpleasant to see, she was prescribed scopolamine (hyoscine) and it had very unpleasant side-effects affecting her mental state and level of consciousness. I felt rather guilty at the time as I’d asked the GP if they could offer anything to help the drooling as the saliva was wetting her clothes and causing skin maceration/inflammation.

Anyone remember Forster’s story The Machine Stops?
I remember vividly seeing a TV adaption of it when I was a child. Has made me very dubious about this glorious automated future ever since…

Chilling isn’t it.

Was she herself aware of the effects?
For most people it reduces awareness in a manner that makes them feel calmer and more relaxed; however, there are a tiny proportion of people (less than 1 in 100,000) for whom this effect does not occur. This difference is likely to be genetic.

Has anyone used a mydriatic on you (i.e. a drug to dilate the pupils of your eyes)? If so did it make you feel ‘odd’?

City of Ember also has a similar theme, except that the people themselves are integrated into the progressive degeneration as an equal component of the system.

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I don’t think so. We didn’t live in the same town either and had not seen her for a few weeks. She had a full care package and the carers would have administered what had been prescribed. There was a lot of ‘churn’ with carers and some were better than others but frequent rota changes meant a lack of continuity, so with different carers throughout the week and us not having visited for a week or two due to our work/young children, I think the effects were cumulative over time and made her very ‘knocked off’. She was admitted, and we had a very thorough Care of the Elderly team evaluate her and they felt that the hyoscine had contributed to deterioration and it was stopped. The admission was probably precipitated by a UTI, but that may well have been related to poor hydration as she was so knocked off. These things are often multifactorial but iatrogenic effects can easily be overlooked by the individual or others in contact with them.

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