I, Robot is a fixup novel of science fiction short stories or essays by American writer Isaac Asimov. The stories originally appeared in the American magazines Super Science Stories and Astounding Science Fiction between 1940 and 1950 and were then compiled into a book for stand-alone publication by Gnome Press in 1950, in an initial edition of 5,000 copies. The stories are woven together by a framing narrative in which the fictional Dr. Susan Calvin tells each story to a reporter (who serves as the narrator) in the 21st century. Although the stories can be read separately, they share a theme of the interaction of humans, robots, and morality, and when combined they tell a larger story of Asimov's fictional history of robotics.
Several of the stories feature the character of Dr. Calvin, chief robopsychologist at U.S. Robots and Mechanical Men, Inc., the major manufacturer of robots. Upon their publication in this collection, Asimov wrote a framing sequence presenting the stories as Calvin's reminiscences during an interview with her about her life's work, chiefly concerned with aberrant behaviour of robots and the use of "robopsychology" to sort out what is happening in their positronic brain. The book also contains the short story in which Asimov's Three Laws of Robotics first appear, which had large influence on later science fiction and had impact on thought on ethics of artificial intelligence as well. Other characters that appear in these short stories are Powell and Donovan, a field-testing team which locates flaws in USRMM's prototype models.
The collection shares a title with the 1939 short story "I, Robot" by Eando Binder (pseudonym of Earl and Otto Binder), which greatly influenced Asimov. Asimov had wanted to call his collection Mind and Iron, and initially objected when the publisher made the title the same as Binder's. In his introduction to the story in Isaac Asimov Presents the Great SF Stories (1979), Asimov wrote:
It certainly caught my attention. Two months after I read it, I began 'Robbie', about a sympathetic robot, and that was the start of my positronic robot series. Eleven years later, when nine of my robot stories were collected into a book, the publisher named the collection I, Robot over my objections. My book is now the more famous, but Otto's story was there first.
First edition cover
|Cover artist||Ed Cartier|
|December 2, 1950|
|Media type||Print (hardback)|
|Followed by||The Complete Robot|
The New York Times described I, Robot as "an exciting science thriller [which] could be fun for those whose nerves are not already made raw by the potentialities of the atomic age." Describing it as "continuously fascinating", Groff Conklin "Unreservedly recommended" the book. P. Schuyler Miller recommended the collection "For puzzle situations, for humor, for warm character, [and] for most of the values of plain good writing".
At least three of the short stories from I, Robot have been adapted for television. The first was a 1962 episode of Out of this World hosted by Boris Karloff called "Little Lost Robot" with Maxine Audley as Susan Calvin. Two short stories from the collection were made into episodes of Out of the Unknown: "The Prophet" (1967), based on "Reason"; and "Liar!" (1969). The 12th episode of the USSR science fiction TV series This Fantastic World, filmed in 1987 and entitled Don't Joke with Robots, was based on works by Aleksandr Belyaev and Fredrik Kilander as well as Asimov's "Liar!" story.
Both the original and revival series of The Outer Limits include episodes named "I, Robot"; however, both are adaptations of the Earl and Otto Binder story of that name and are unconnected with Asimov's work.
In the late 1970s, Warner Brothers acquired the option to make a film based on the book, but no screenplay was ever accepted. The most notable attempt was one by Harlan Ellison, who collaborated with Asimov himself to create a version which captured the spirit of the original. Asimov is quoted as saying that this screenplay would lead to "the first really adult, complex, worthwhile science fiction movie ever made."
Ellison's script builds a framework around Asimov's short stories that involves a reporter named Robert Bratenahl tracking down information about Susan Calvin's alleged former lover Stephen Byerly. Asimov's stories are presented as flashbacks that differ from the originals in their stronger emphasis on Calvin's character. Ellison placed Calvin into stories in which she did not originally appear and fleshed out her character's role in ones where she did. In constructing the script as a series of flashbacks that focused on character development rather than action, Ellison used the film Citizen Kane as a model.
Although acclaimed by critics, the screenplay is generally considered to have been unfilmable based upon the technology and average film budgets of the time. Asimov also believed that the film may have been scrapped because of a conflict between Ellison and the producers: when the producers suggested changes in the script, instead of being diplomatic as advised by Asimov, Ellison "reacted violently" and offended the producers. The script was serialized in Asimov's Science Fiction magazine in late 1987, and eventually appeared in book form under the title I, Robot: The Illustrated Screenplay, in 1994 (reprinted 2004, ISBN 1-4165-0600-4).
The film I, Robot, starring Will Smith, was released by Twentieth Century Fox on July 16, 2004 in the United States. Its plot incorporates elements of "Little Lost Robot," some of Asimov's character names and the Three Laws. However, the plot of the movie is mostly original work adapted from a screenplay Hardwired by Jeff Vintar completely unlinked to Asimov's stories and has been compared to Asimov's The Caves of Steel, which revolves around the murder of a roboticist (although the rest of the film's plot is not based on that novel or other works by Asimov). Unlike the books by Asimov, the movie featured hordes of killer robots.
Mickey Zucker Reichert was asked to write three prequels of I, Robot by Asimov's estate, because she is a science fiction writer with a medical degree. She first met Asimov when she was 23, although she did not know him well. She is the first female writer to be authorized to write stories based on Asimov's novels; follow-ups to his Foundation series were written by Gregory Benford, Greg Bear and David Brin. The prequels were ordered by Berkley Books, and consist of:
In 2004 The Saturday Evening Post said that I, Robot's Three Laws "revolutionized the science fiction genre and made robots far more interesting than they ever had been before." I, Robot has influenced many aspects of modern popular culture, particularly with respect to science fiction and technology. One example of this is in the technology industry. The name of the real-life modem manufacturer named U.S. Robotics was directly inspired by I, Robot. The name is taken from the name of a robot manufacturer ("United States Robots and Mechanical Men") that appears throughout Asimov's robot short stories.
Many works in the field of science fiction have also paid homage to Asimov's collection.
An episode of the original Star Trek series, "I, Mudd" (1967) which depicts a planet of androids in need of humans references "I, Robot." Another reference appears in the title of a Star Trek: The Next Generation episode, "I, Borg" (1992), in which Geordi La Forge befriends a lost member of the Borg collective and teaches it a sense of individuality and free will.
The animated science fiction/comedy Futurama makes several references to I, Robot. The title of the episode "I, Roommate" (1999) is a spoof on I, Robot although the plot of the episode has little to do with the original stories. Additionally, the episode "The Cyber House Rules" included an optician named "Eye Robot" and the episode "Anthology of Interest II" included a segment called "I, Meatbag." Also in "Bender's Game" (2008) the psychiatrist is shown a logical fallacy and explodes when the assistant shouts "Liar!" a la "Liar!". Leela once told Bender to "cover his ears" so that he would not hear the robot-destroying paradox which she used to destroy Robot Santa (he punishes the bad, he kills people, killing is bad, therefore he must punish himself), causing a total breakdown; additionally, Bender has stated that he is Three Laws Safe.
The positronic brain, which Asimov named his robots' central processors, is what powers Data from Star Trek: The Next Generation, as well as other Soong type androids. Positronic brains have been referenced in a number of other television shows including Doctor Who, Once Upon a Time... Space, Perry Rhodan, The Number of the Beast, and others.
Author Cory Doctorow has written a story called "I, Robot" as homage to Asimov, as well as "I, Row-Boat", both released in the short-story collection Overclocked: Stories of the Future Present. He has also said, "If I return to this theme, it will be with a story about uplifted cheese sandwiches, called 'I, Rarebit.'"
Other cultural references to the book are less directly related to science fiction and technology. The 1977 album I Robot, by The Alan Parsons Project, was inspired by Asimov's I, Robot. In its original conception, the album was to follow the themes and concepts presented in the short story collection. The Alan Parsons Project were not able to obtain the rights in spite of Asimov's enthusiasm; he had already assigned the rights elsewhere. Thus, the album's concept was altered slightly although the name was kept (minus comma to avoid copyright infringement). The 2002 electronica album by experimental artist Edman Goodrich (known, at times, to operate under the aliases of "je, le roi!" and "The Ghost Quartet") shares the title of I, Robot, and is heavily influenced by Asimovian themes. The 2009 album, I, Human, by Singaporean band Deus Ex Machina draws heavily upon Asimov's principles on robotics and applies it to the concept of cloning.
The Indian science fiction film Endhiran, released in 2010, refers to Asimov's three laws for artificial intelligence for the fictional character Chitti: The Robot. When a scientist takes in the robot for evaluation, the panel enquires whether the robot was built using the Three Laws of Robotics.
The theme for Burning Man 2018 was "I, Robot".
|The Rest of the Robots|
Alexander Proyas (; born 23 September 1963) is an Australian film director, screenwriter, and producer. Proyas is best known for directing the films The Crow (1994), Dark City (1998), I, Robot (2004), Knowing (2009), and Gods of Egypt (2016).Audi RSQ
The Audi RSQ is a mid-engined concept car developed by Audi AG for use as a product placement in the 2004 sci-fi film I, Robot. It is meant to depict a technologically advanced automobile in the Chicago cityscape from the year 2035.
This sports coupé is a visionary interpretation of Audi's typical automobile design. An important challenge presented to the designers was that in order for the car to be successful advertising for Audi as product placement, despite its extreme character, the car still had to be recognised by those audience members familiar with car designs as an Audi. To accommodate this demand, the engineers implemented a current Audi front-end design which includes the trapezoidal "Audi Single-Frame Grille," the company's trademark overlapping four rings, and the Multi Media Interface (MMI) driver-to-car control system. The RSQ also includes special features suggested by film director Alex Proyas. The car uses spheres instead of conventional wheels. Its two reverse butterfly doors are hinged to the C-posts of the body.Although this kind of collaboration was a first for Audi, a similar project named the Lexus 2054 was developed by Lexus for use in the 2002 film Minority Report.Bridget Moynahan
Kathryn Bridget Moynahan (born April 28, 1971) is an American actress and model. Moynahan is known for her role in the police drama Blue Bloods. She graduated from Longmeadow High School in Massachusetts in 1989, and began pursuing a career in modeling. She appeared in department-store catalogs and magazines, and after doing television commercials, she began taking acting lessons. Moynahan made her television debut in a guest appearance in the comedy series Sex and the City in 1999, where she later had a recurring role as Natasha.
She made her feature film debut in Coyote Ugly (2000). She was cast in a supporting role in Serendipity (2001). Moynahan was also featured in films The Sum of All Fears (2002), The Recruit (2003), I, Robot (2004), Lord of War (2005), Grey Matters (2006), Prey (2007), Noise (2007), Ramona and Beezus (2010), John Wick (2014), The Journey Home (2014) and John Wick: Chapter 2 (2017).
She starred in the ABC television series Six Degrees, which premiered in September 2006, but was taken off the schedule after just eight episodes aired. Moynahan has starred as an assistant district attorney in the CBS drama Blue Bloods since September 2010, which is currently (2019) in its ninth season.Bruce Greenwood
Stuart Bruce Greenwood (born August 12, 1956) is a Canadian actor and producer. He is known for his roles as the American president in Thirteen Days, National Treasure: Book of Secrets and Kingsman: The Golden Circle and for his role as Captain Christopher Pike in J. J. Abrams's Star Trek reboot series. In television, Greenwood starred as Gil Garcetti in The People v. O. J. Simpson: American Crime Story, and has appeared in Mad Men, St. Elsewhere, Knots Landing, and John from Cincinnati. He currently stars as Dr. Randolph Bell in the medical drama The Resident.
He has appeared in supporting roles in such films as Hollywood Homicide, Double Jeopardy, Déjà Vu, I, Robot, Dinner for Schmucks, Capote, The Post and as the motion-capture alien dubbed "Cooper" in Super 8. Greenwood is also a voice actor; his voice roles include Chiron in the Canadian animated series Class of the Titans and Bruce Wayne / Batman in Batman: Under the Red Hood, Young Justice and Batman: Gotham by Gaslight.Eando Binder
Eando Binder is a pen-name used by two mid-20th-century science fiction authors, Earl Andrew Binder (1904–1965) and his brother Otto Binder (1911–1974). The name is derived from their first initials ("E and O Binder").
Under the Eando name, the Binders wrote some published science fiction, including stories featuring a heroic robot named Adam Link. The first Adam Link story, published in 1939, is titled I, Robot. An unrelated collection of stories by Isaac Asimov, also entitled I, Robot, was published in 1950. The name was chosen by the publisher, against Asimov's wishes.By 1939, Otto had taken over all of the writing, leaving Earl to act as his literary agent. Under his own name, Otto wrote for the Captain Marvel line of comic books published by Fawcett Comics (1941–1953) and the Superman line for DC Comics (1948–1969), as well as numerous other publishers, with credited stories numbering over 4400. The pen-name Eando Binder is also credited with over 160 comic book stories.G.I. Robot
G.I. Robot is the name of a series of six fictional robots that appeared in comic books published by DC Comics. The very first G.I. Robot, nicknamed Joe, first appeared in Star Spangled War Stories #101 (February–March 1962), created by Robert Kanigher and Ross Andru, with a second one named Mac in Star Spangled War Stories #125 (February–March 1966), by Kanigher and Joe Kubert.
The better known J.A.K.E. 1 first appeared in Weird War Tales #101 (July 1981), created by Kanigher and Pepe Morino Casaras. J.A.K.E. 2 first appeared in Weird War Tales #113 (July 1982), by Kanigher and Fred Carrillo.
A newer model of G.I. Robot, designed by Lex Luthor for use by the United States military, was introduced in Batman Confidential #4, by Andy Diggle and Whilce Portacio. Subsequently, J.A.K.E. #6.1 appeared in Checkmate Vol. 2 #24 (May 2008), created by Greg Rucka and Eric Trautmann.I, Robot... You, Jane
"I, Robot...You, Jane" is the eighth episode of season 1 of the television series Buffy the Vampire Slayer. The episode was written by staff writers Ashley Gable and Thomas A. Swyden, and directed by Stephen Posey. The episode originally aired on April 28, 1997.
In this episode, Willow accidentally releases the demon Moloch onto the internet. There he wreaks havoc and gains a following.I, Robot (1964 The Outer Limits)
"I, Robot" is an episode of the original The Outer Limits television show. It first aired on 14 November 1964, during the second season. It was remade under the same title in 1995. Leonard Nimoy appeared in both versions.I, Robot (1995 The Outer Limits)
"I, Robot" is an episode of The Outer Limits television show. It first aired on 23 July 1995, during the first season. It is a remake of "I, Robot" (1964), an episode of the original series.I, Robot (film)
I, Robot (stylized as i,robot) is a 2004 American science fiction action film directed by Alex Proyas. The screenplay by Jeff Vintar and Akiva Goldsman is from a screen story by Vintar, based on his original screenplay "Hardwired," and suggested by Isaac Asimov's short-story collection of the same name. The film stars Will Smith, Bridget Moynahan, Bruce Greenwood, James Cromwell, Chi McBride, and Alan Tudyk.
I, Robot was released in North America on July 16, 2004, in Australia on July 22, 2004, in the United Kingdom on August 6, 2004 and in other countries between July 2004 to October 2004. Produced with a budget of $120 million, the film grossed $144 million domestically and $202 million in foreign markets for a worldwide total of $346 million. It received mixed reviews from critics, with praise for the visual effects and acting but criticism of the plot. At the 77th Academy Awards, the film was nominated for Best Visual Effects.I, Robot (short story)
"I, Robot" is a science fiction short story by Eando Binder (nom de plume for Earl and Otto Binder), part of a series about a robot named Adam Link. It was published in the January 1939 issue of Amazing Stories, well before the related and better-known book I, Robot (1950), a collection of short stories, by Isaac Asimov. Asimov was heavily influenced by the Binder short story.I, Robot (video game)
I, Robot is an arcade game designed by Dave Theurer and published by Atari, Inc. It was developed in 1983 and released in June 1984. Atari originally intended to release the game in 1983, but it was delayed due to technical issues and difficulties, so it was returned to the lab for further testing and research, and was not fully released until June 1984. Only a total of 750–1000 machines were produced. The arcade machine comes with two games. The first is I, Robot, a multi-directional shooter that has the player assume the role of "Unhappy Interface Robot #1984", a servant bot that rebels against Big Brother. The object of the game involves the servant bot going through 126 levels, turning red squares to blue to destroy Big Brother's shield and eye. The player can switch to the second game, Doodle City, a drawing tool that lasts for three minutes.
I, Robot is known for being the first commercially produced video game with filled 3-D polygon graphics with flat shading, as well as being the first video game to feature camera-control options. Its name was originally "Ice Castles", but was changed to "I, Robot".
Upon release of the game, I, Robot received poor reception and was a financial flop. Approximately 750–1000 units of the game were created, with few having been confirmed to exist today. However, the remaining arcade cabinets have become rare collectibles and the game has received later praise for its innovative 3D graphics. Author David Ellis listed it as one of the "notable classics" of its time.I Robot (album)
I Robot is the second studio album by English progressive rock band The Alan Parsons Project, released on 1 June 1977 by Arista Records. The album draws conceptually on author Isaac Asimov's science fiction Robot trilogy, exploring philosophical themes regarding artificial intelligence. It was re-released on tape/record in 1984 and on CD 2007.Little Lost Robot
"Little Lost Robot" is a science fiction short story by American writer Isaac Asimov. It was first published in the March 1947 issue of Astounding Science Fiction and reprinted in the collections I, Robot (1950), The Complete Robot (1982), Robot Dreams (1986), and Robot Visions (1990).
"Little Lost Robot" was adapted by Leo Lehman for the 1962 Associated British Corporation anthology television series Out of This World, which also marks the first appearance of Susan Calvin, played by Maxine Audley, in TV and movies. It is the only episode of this series that survives in the archives today. It is available on DVD in region 2 from the British Film Institute.
Elements of "Little Lost Robot" appeared in the film I Robot (2004), an otherwise original story based on Asimov's Robot concepts and characters. The story was broadcast as episode three of a five-part 15 Minute Drama radio adaptation of Asimov's stories on BBC Radio 4 in February 2017.Robot series (Asimov)
The Robot series is a series of 38 science fiction short stories and five novels by American writer Isaac Asimov, featuring positronic robots.Susan Calvin
Dr. Susan Calvin is a fictional character appearing in Isaac Asimov's Robot series of science fiction short stories. She was the chief robopsychologist at US Robots and Mechanical Men, Inc., posited as the major manufacturer of robots in the 21st century. She was the main character in many of Asimov's short stories concerning robots, which were later collected in the books I, Robot and The Complete Robot.The Care Bears (TV series)
The Care Bears is an animated television series based on the Care Bears franchise, which aired between 1985 and 1988 in syndication; on the ABC network, The CBN Family Channel from 1988 to 1990, The Family Channel from 1990 to 1997 (DIC episodes only) and from 1990 to 1998 (Nelvana episodes only) in the United States. The 1985 episodes were produced by DiC Audiovisuel and LBS Communications; the ABC episodes were made by Nelvana under the name The Care Bears Family. This is the only Care Bears series produced by Nelvana; in 2007, Sabella Dern Entertainment produced a revival, Care Bears: Adventures in Care-a-Lot.The Complete Robot
The Complete Robot (1982) is a collection of 31 of the 37 science fiction short stories about robots by American writer Isaac Asimov, written between 1939 and 1977. Most of the stories had been previously collected in the books I, Robot and The Rest of the Robots, while four had previously been uncollected and the rest had been scattered across five other anthologies. They share a theme of the interaction of humans, robots and morality, and put together tell a larger story of Asimov's fictional history of robotics. The stories are grouped into categories.Three Laws of Robotics
The Three Laws of Robotics (often shortened to The Three Laws or known as Asimov's Laws) are a set of rules devised by the science fiction author Isaac Asimov. The rules were introduced in his 1942 short story "Runaround" (included in the 1950 collection I, Robot), although they had been foreshadowed in a few earlier stories. The Three Laws, quoted as being from the "Handbook of Robotics, 56th Edition, 2058 A.D.", are:
First Law – A robot may not injure a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm.
Second Law – A robot must obey the orders given it by human beings except where such orders would conflict with the First Law.
Third Law – A robot must protect its own existence as long as such protection does not conflict with the First or Second Laws.These form an organizing principle and unifying theme for Asimov's robotic-based fiction, appearing in his Robot series, the stories linked to it, and his Lucky Starr series of young-adult fiction. The Laws are incorporated into almost all of the positronic robots appearing in his fiction, and cannot be bypassed, being intended as a safety feature. Many of Asimov's robot-focused stories involve robots behaving in unusual and counter-intuitive ways as an unintended consequence of how the robot applies the Three Laws to the situation in which it finds itself. Other authors working in Asimov's fictional universe have adopted them and references, often parodic, appear throughout science fiction as well as in other genres.
The original laws have been altered and elaborated on by Asimov and other authors. Asimov himself made slight modifications to the first three in various books and short stories to further develop how robots would interact with humans and each other. In later fiction where robots had taken responsibility for government of whole planets and human civilizations, Asimov also added a fourth, or zeroth law, to precede the others:
A robot may not harm humanity, or, by inaction, allow humanity to come to harm.The Three Laws, and the zeroth, have pervaded science fiction and are referred to in many books, films, and other media, and have impacted thought on ethics of artificial intelligence as well.