Fellow humans, pay heed: We are nearing the Singularity long promised by futurist Ray Kurzweil—the day when technology exceeds human capability and elevates existence to a hyper-efficient state that may or may not have room for mere mortals.
Witness: the iRobot Looj 330 Robotic Gutter Cleaner.
Set on two wee tank treads and sporting a rotating set of blades and brushes, the Looj is a simple contraption. Set it in your gutter, turn it on, and it will churn through all those dead leaves, gunk and squirrel droppings that humans, in more barbaric times, would have been expected to dig out with their—gasp—hands. Granted, you still have to climb up a ladder and point a remote control at it, but now you can hold a cup of coffee or stare into space while doing so.
According to the Home Depot website—the Looj is an online-only product—this innovation is either a stunning leap forward, or a complete let-down. From the reviews: “It was great! I’ve long been a fan of robotics, and this task is great for one!”; “I knew going in that it was a gamble on whether or not it would work…..and it didn’t. Not even close.”
Like the future, the Looj is uncertain—and at $300, it is a gamble indeed. But we won’t get to the Singularity without lazy people willing to shell out hard-earned cash to facilitate further laziness. Ask yourself: What would Ray Kurzweil do?