The Curious Robot (Adapted from ‘The Curious Robot’ - By Jim Westergren)
About the passage
A. Read to understand
1. Answer the following questions.
a. What was the work being done by the robots?
Ans. Robots were repairing and manufacturing robot cars.
b. What reason did Mobot give for saying that humans were superior to robots?
Ans. According to Mobot humans were superior to robots because they can perform even those actions which robots cannot perform.
c. How many humans were left on the planet? Why had their number reduced?
Ans. They are less than 1000 humans on the planet and they are still contracting as the humans are still destroying themselves for various reasons.
d. Why did the humans start replacing themselves with robots?
Ans. Humans started replacing themselves with robots because they were thinking that robots are more superior to humans and then they did not need so many humans.
e. What would a human do in case a robot was disobedient?
Ans. Human would destroy them in case a robot was disobedient.
2. Read the given points of comparison between robots and humans. Write R for those relating to robots and H for those relating to humans.
a. cannot be controlled H
b. can be controlled by programming R
c. can have great physical force R
d. have no real physical force H
e. memory banks have low capacity H
f. memory banks have greater capacity R
g. dangerous and harmful H
h. harmless unless programmed otherwise R
i. perform as per instruction and programming R
j. perform any action H
B. Read to infer
1. Why was Tnik-Tnok surprised to see a human?
Ans. Tnik-Tnok was surprised to see a human because he had never seen a human before.
2. Would you say that the human was both surprised and irritated by Tnik-Tnok? Give reasons for your answer.
Ans. Human was both surprised and irritated by Tnik-Tnok because he refused to answer questions from robot and left in his car quickly.
3. Why were the other robots uncomfortable with Tnik-Tnok’s conversation with the human?
Ans. The other robots were uncomfortable with Tnik-Tnok’s conversation with the human because no robot ever put a question to a human.
4. “They can even destroy other human beings. In fact, they are very fond of doing this.’ What evidence in the story proves this?
Ans. There are less than a thousand humans on the planet and their numbers are decreasing.
5. ‘You see, it is indeed a silly thing.’
i. Who said this? Who does ‘it’ refer to here?
Ans. Tnik-Tnok said this. Here ‘it’ refers to ‘human’
ii. Why does the speaker think ‘it’ to be a ‘silly thing’?
Ans. The speaker thought ‘it’ to be a ‘silly thing’ because it does not even know why it exists.
6. Tnik-Tnok calls humans a ‘dangerous species’. Give two examples from the story to show the violent nature of humans.
Ans. i. They can give orders to robots, destroy them, or construct new ones.
ii. They can even destroy other human beings.
1. Do you agree that Tnik – Tnok underestimated humans? Give reasons for your answer.
Ans. Yes, I agree that Tnik – Tnok underestimated humans because it called human a strange creature and a silly thing.
2. What do you think was the ‘hand-held device’ on which the human pressed a green button?
Ans. The ‘hand-held device’ on which the human pressed a green button could be a remote control. (Answer may vary)
3. What do you think was Tnik-Tnok’s plan to make humans smarter?
Ans. To take away the robots or at least make them stop doing the work that humans are supposed to do. (Answer may vary)
4. Do you think this play can be called science fiction? Give reasons for your answer.
Ans. Yes, this play can be called science fiction because it is based on imaginative concepts such as advanced science and technology i.e. robot. (Answer may vary)