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Delivery Drones & Holograms, Retina Scans & Robot Land

May 28th, 2016 by Michael Dyet

Hmmm, will I live long enough to become completely obsolete or just long enough to see the train steaming down the track towards me?

Each day I open my eyes and roll out of bed wondering what technological innovation will today pass from the beta stage into common use. And, as a result, how will I have to adapt my cherished routine because of it? I see my future as a series of first-times and last-days.

The first time I make a purchase via my internet-enabled, wireless wristwatch, pay with Bitcoin and receive an order confirmation from a virtual customer service rep named Hal.

The first time a remote operated drone navigates the airspace in a prescribed flight plan to deliver a parcel to my doorstep 4 hours after I made the purchase – scaring the daylights out of my cat in the process.

The first time I participate in a virtual meeting with holograms of the participants seated around the conference table which are so lifelike that I forget for a moment that they are computer generated avatars.

The first airplane flight I take in a fully automated passenger jet, which can fly from Toronto to Vancouver in 45 minutes, with no actual human being in the cockpit.

The last time I place a key in the lock to enter my home as the entire complex is scheduled to be converted the next day to voice automated, retina scan entry and security which is monitored 24/7 by a software program developed and operated by Facebook.

The last time I punch in “Dinner Plate” on my microwave, to heat my store-bought and pre-cooked pasta, because I have just subscribed to a service that will deliver a hot meal to my door each day at precisely 5:30 pm.

The last time I make an ABM withdrawal because a switch is about to be flipped to convert all payments, purchases and withdrawals to virtual transactions which will make bricks and mortar bank buildings unnecessary.

The last time I officially draw a paycheque because tomorrow a robot will be installed, where my desk used to be, that can do my job more efficiently and work 24/7 without triggering overtime pay or running afoul of labour laws.

I will likely live to see at least some of these first first-times and last-days. When that day comes, I will write a post bemoaning the loss of the good old days when do-it-yourself was considered a good thing rather than a waste of resources and citing robots as a metaphor for the depersonalization of society and the obsolescence of the common man.

In a classic case of irony, you will read the post on your internet-enabled wristwatch which you purchased using Bitcoin and had delivered to your door the same day by a drone named Hal.

~ Michael Robert Dyet is the author of “Until the Deep Water Stills – An Internet-enhanced Novel” – double winner in the Reader Views Literary Awards 2009. Visit Michael’s website at or the novel online companion at

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