I’ve been reading a lot lately about the future of human civilization and how technology will change our lives, our jobs, the amount of landmass under the sea, our medical and our governments, politics and more.
Biotechnology, artificial intelligence, robots, climate change…
In 50 years, it will be a world we just won’t recognize. Almost all “mundane” and some very not mundane tasks will be accomplished by robots which run off artificial intelligence and will be much smarter than all of us combined.
But as I stood over the trash can today, peeling a hard-boiled egg, I realized that eggs were peeled this same way in the 1950’s when I was born, and probably in the 1920’s and earlier. We can now use technology (the microwave) to cook them, but we still have to get off the shell.
There is something fun and very tactile about peeling an egg – if you are not in a big hurry. The sound the shell makes as it cracks. How you can get your fingernail under one little broken section, and often it pulls along with it half of the shell. The slightly wet feel of the egg inside, although the shell was bone dry. The thin, see-through membrane separating the shell from the inside.
How often have you heard it said the “Small things matter”? The small task of shelling an egg reminds of this. Humans have fingers, such miraculous appendages, that can do such things. If someone invents a robot to shell eggs for us, we will lose a little bit of our dexterity and one of our joys in life.
So I say, bring it on, robots! I’m sure I’ll love most of what you can do (vacuum the floors, for example), but there are limits. I’ll keep shelling the eggs.