A Thursday story in Extreme Tech suggests that “robot sex partners” are going to be pretty common by 2025, just over a decade away. Advances in robotics and artificial intelligence are combining to make possible any kind of sexual experience one could desire, without actually having to deal with an actual human being with feelings and desires of their own. The potential for disruption for society and human relations will be profound.
These are not sex dolls, which have been the source of derision against people who use them, though even these are getting more sophisticated and more lifelike. These sexbots, to coin a term, will in the fullness of time be “fully functional in multiple techniques,” to quote Commander Data from “Star Trek: The Next Generation.” With artificial intelligence features they might eventually become indistinguishable from real human beings. The difference is that your desire will be their command.
The first change that the coming sexbot revolution might wrought is that the world’s oldest profession may be made obsolete. Even at a great upfront expense, a sexbot is likely to pay for itself over time. They will be adaptable for physical appearance and sexual performance. They will be no threat of a sexually transmitted disease or being waylaid by pimp.
The physically unattractive will now have the opportunity for erotic experiences with a sexbot with film star good looks, but the kindness and sensitivity that anyone can desire. They will not betray their human partners, belittle them, or breakup with them. As a bonus, they will not try to sue for sexual assault after the fact, a real danger now for any male student on a number of college campuses.
The bad part of this coming revolution is that civilization is maintained by human relations between the sexes, as messy and as heart breaking as they tend to be. It does not take a science fiction genius to imagine that human beings may largely stop mating with one another and will be seduced, as it were, by the too perfect relationships they can have with sexbots. Civilization may not die with a band or a whimper, but with a sigh of orgasm.