Can A Robot Be A Person? Bicentennial Man

1797 words - 7 pages

Can a robot be a person? Or should it be said, can Andrew be a person? Andrew is simply NDR-114: an androgynous robot designed to handle household chores, child education, servant work, and anything else as ordered by humans, the Martin family. It only got its name when Little Miss stumbled over the word "android", and mistaken it as something else and said "Andrew" instead. As Andrew begins to experience emotions and creative thought, the Martin family soon discovers they own a very different and unique robot. Does Andrew, this unique form of artificial intelligence fit into White's 10 criteria for a person?1. Is alive2. Is aware3. Feels positive and negative sensations4. Has a sense of self with emotions5. Controls its own behavior (can be held responsible)6. Recognizes other persons and treats them appropriately7. Is capable of Analytical, Conceptual thought8. Is able to learn; can retain and recall information9. Can solve complicated problems with analytical thought10. Has the capacity for communication that suggests thought#1 - Is Andrew alive?Andrew is definitely alive. Every living thing needs a source of energy in order for it to move, grow, and to survive. Human-persons' source of energy is food and water, and as for Andrew, his source of energy is the outlet. Without the outlet, he would lack energy and shut off, in our terms, die. When Miss (Grace) ordered Andrew to jump out of the window, he did, and he came back injured. If a human-person jumped out the window, he or she would obviously be injured too. But say a dead carcass was thrown out of the window, it would still be dead. Only living things can be injured and actually feel it. Andrew's mind is made up of all the little chips and parts in his "body" and since their system are "turned on", it replaces the heart and lungs.#2 - Is Andrew aware?Andrew is definitely aware. He acknowledges everything around him and his "family" members, Sir (Richard Martin), Ma'am (Mrs. Martin), Miss and Little Miss (Amanda). He is aware of his duties and of the laws he must obey. He was aware of equality, when Sir noted that "Andrew is now a member of the family", he knew that everyone in the family should be treated the same. He was not only aware of the physicals surrounding him, he is also aware of the emotions. The second example is Andrew referred to himself as 'one' and he never used 'I' until he achieved his status of 'free'. He understood from reading books to increase his knowledge that people strive to achieve freedom in the world; he strived to achieve that freedom too.#3 - Does Andrew feel positive and negative sensations?Andrew definitely feels positive and negative sensations. In the beginning when Andrew accidentally broke Little Miss's glass horse, he felt terrible when she said "I hate you, you ruined everything." He was especially good friends with Little Miss, as a result when she died, he felt the...

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