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?
b. What reason did Mobot give for saying that humans were superior to robots?
c. How many humans were left on the planet? Why had their number reduced?
d. Why did the humans start replacing themselves with robots?
e. What would a human do 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
b. can be controlled by programming
c. can have great physical force
d. have no real physical force
e. memory banks have low capacity
f. memory banks have greater capacity
g. dangerous and harmful
h. harmless unless programmed otherwise
i. perform as per instruction and programming
j. perform any action
B. Read to infer
1. Why was Tnik-Tnok surprised to see a human?
2. Would you say that the human was both surprised and irritated by Tnik-Tnok? Give reasons for your answer.
3. Why were the other robots uncomfortable with Tnik-Tnok’s conversation with the 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?
5. ‘You see, it is indeed a silly thing.’
i. Who said this? Who does ‘it’ refer to here?
ii. Why does the speaker think ‘it’ to be a ‘silly thing’?
6. Tnik-Tnok calls humans a ‘dangerous species’. Give two examples from the story to show the violent nature of humans.
1. Do you agree that Tnik – Tnok underestimated humans? Give reasons for your answer.
2. What do you think was the ‘hand-held device’ on which the human pressed a green button?
3. What do you think was Tnik-Tnok’s plan to make humans smarter?
4. Do you think this play can be called science fiction? Give reasons for your answer.