“Dream lover” has taken on a whole new meaning. By 2050, you could be falling for a humanoid.
Thanks to computer programming, robots will be almost indistinguishable from humans — they will have the same muscles, emotions, voices and talents.
Forget that you’re not exactly from the same mold. Sexually speaking, these sexbots will have proven themselves superior to us.
“Love and sex with robots on a grand scale is inevitable,” according to David N.L. Levy, author of Sex with Robots: The Evolution of Human-Robot Relations.
In the age of technology, who can deny that people love their gadgets? Is it a huge leap in logic to think that we will lust after sexbots, artificial skin and all?
Can these amour-inducing androids actually turn us into raging sex maniacs?
An expert on artificial intelligence, Levy certainly thinks so.
“Love with robots will be as normal as love with other humans, while the number of sexual acts and lovemaking positions commonly practiced between humans will be extended, as robots teach us more than is in all of the world's published sex manuals combined,” he writes.
Apparently, these inanimate objects of desire will trump the rest of us when it comes to sexual techniques; they will far exceed human companions when it comes to sexual gratification. (Normally, that would be a really hot thought, but right now I can’t shake visions of The Terminator.)
Among the ways sexbots will show us up under the sheets:
— You will have your very own personal sex tutor.
— You can have sex whenever you want.
— Your sex life will be full of variety and adventure, fueling your libido as never before.
— You will be able to fulfill your every sexual fantasy.
— You will never hear the words, “I have a headache.” In other words, you won’t be rejected.
— You could have better sex than you ever thought possible.
It all sounds crazy — inconceivable — until you consider that the Japanese already have a multibillion-dollar robot industry.
One company, Axis, is already producing life-sized Honeydoll sexbots for men, which cost $7,000.
South Korean and Japanese rent-a-sex-doll services have proven themselves successful so far. In the very least, it’s safe to say that there will be a demand for these virtual beings, at least initially.
Still, I’m just not buying Levy’s suggestions that we’ll actually develop an emotional love relationship with these electronic objects.
While Levy claims that a benefit of android sex is that you can be intimate sans the emotional “complications” of a human sexual relationship, he still proposes that we run the risk of falling in love.
Just as we love our pets, motorcycles and partners, we will fall head over heels for our sexy humanoids. Perhaps, then, this toy’s warning label should include: “Caution: Having sex with this product could cause you to fall in love with it.”
Perhaps what is most amusing about Levy’s vision is that he’s way off on how women, in particular, will take these humanoids to heart. His book’s front cover highlights this with its illustration of a bride leaning over to kiss a robot. R2D2 was cute, but come on!
Given Levy’s gender stereotypes around female motivations for sex, love and intimacy, he fantasizes that women will be waiting with their arms wide-open “to feel the robot’s virtual love for them.”
Levy’s rationale: In recent years, hordes of women have taken to battery-powered sexual enhancement products as never before. So robot-sex is just a natural extension of her titillating toy box. Grateful for the immense physical pleasures attained from their robot-induced orgasms, women will be enthralled with their virtual lover’s love-making skills.
Men, on the other hand, will lust after sexbots for purely physical reasons. They may, however, use the sexbots in exploring their feelings on a deeper level. Thank goodness, because if Levy’s crystal ball comes true, the genders are going to have major problems being intimate with fellow humans on a number of levels.
In going from the interpersonal to the sociological impact sexbots will have on us, Levy further imagines a world free of sexually transmitted diseases and prostitution. Who needs sex workers when you have your very own sex slave for pleasure and satisfaction? Forgetting the sheer joy some Johns get from just paying for sex — the power element involved — Levy sees the android as the ultimate sex worker. After all, a sexbot will do a much better job than a prostitute in pretending to be into you.
Perhaps most striking about Levy’s work is the presumption that the social stigma for buying and using a sexbot will be minimal.
Who of your friends has a blow-up doll that you know of? If you can’t think of any, then I’ve made my point.
In making this assumption, Levy completely discounts the fact that many people will have trouble getting past the idea that they’re having sex with an android and how society will judge.
He thinks sexbots will be like iPods — everyone will have to have one, and all of us will be having sex galore. In all fairness, he may not be too far off, given our love for our “crackberries.”
While fascinating, I just don’t see Levy’s predictions coming true, at least not on a large scale. Call me old-fashioned, but I can’t imagine anything better than sharing absolutely amazing sex with another human being. Call me a cynic, but I think people will eventually get bored with their sexbots.
In the Know Sex News:
— Matchmaking Institute Opens School in Southeast Asia. The New York-based Matchmaking Institute has made its training and certification available in Asia. Specific services include matchmaker certification, linking singles to certified matchmakers, and providing matchmakers with a support network.
— Maxim Magazine Launches Dating Web site. Maxim, a men’s lifestyle magazine, has partnered with WhiteLabelDating.com to provide its own brand of online dating for men. Readers can search an extensive network of 18- to 35-year-old women for potential dates.
— April is Sexually Transmitted Disease Awareness Month. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is enabling you to know the facts and reminding you and your friends to get tested via its newly-created STD Awareness Web site.
Dr. Yvonne Kristín Fulbright is a sex educator, relationship expert, columnist and founder of Sexuality Source Inc. She is the author of several books including, "Touch Me There! A Hand Guide to Your Orgasmic Hot Spots."