10 Ways Scientists Are Working To Make You Lazy
By Mark Oliver, Listverse, 8 April 2016.
By Mark Oliver, Listverse, 8 April 2016.
Since the first man stepped out of his cave and into the sunlight, we’ve striven to never again repeat that horrible experience.
Through the millennia, we’ve tried many ways to avoid the terrors of going outside or having to slightly move our muscles. The Egyptians tried using slave labor, but alas, the slaves complained and ran away. The Europeans brought us the Industrial Revolution, but still, we were forced to sit at machines and flip a bunch of switches.
Even now, scientists are still striving toward this goal. We’re constantly coming up with new innovations, all in the hopes of eliminating the need to use our arms to pick things up...and we’re getting closer every day.
10. A Drug That Mimics The Effects Of Exercise
People give you all kinds of weird advice when you first start exercising. They say things like, “Be careful you don’t get addicted,” as if there’s a risk that a sane person will enjoy working out. And you know scientists don’t want to lift weights any more than the rest of us. That’s why they’re working on a pill to replace exercise.
They’re making progress, too. Scientists have analyzed the signals our bodies send out during exercise by scanning people doing cardio. Using this information, they’ve made a blueprint of what our bodies do when we work out, and they’re coming up with ways to create the same reaction with a pill.
The most successful “exercise pill” so far seems to be a man-made molecule called “compound 14.” Simply explained, it tricks the body into thinking it’s tired, as if it’s just run a marathon. Believing it’s exhausted, the body cranks up the metabolism, causing you to lose weight.
Scientists tested the molecule on mice, and one lazy rodent managed to lose 5 percent of its body weight in seven days, all without moving. To put that into perspective, that’s like a 90-kilogram (200 lb) man losing 4.5 kilograms (10 lb) in one week while watching reruns of ThunderCats.
Researchers claim their invention is a medicine, saying it’s only intended for the obese and diabetic. But since “obese” by itself describes one in three Americans, this pill might pop up in almost every household if companies can get it on the market.
9. You Won’t Have To Work
If you live in the United States, you might’ve noticed that a lot of jobs are disappearing. But it’s not just that jobs are going abroad. They’re actually leaving people and going to robots.
According to several major figures in the technology world, this trend is just going to continue. In fact, a lot of the most common jobs we have today will be gone in the next 20 years.
This isn’t some future scenario. It’s already started. Amazon is in the process of replacing its fleet of human drivers with robot drones. China has created a factory that is completely manned by robots, and it’s more efficient than the factories staffed by people. And Target has already responded to an employee request for unionization by replacing the staff with robots.
It’s not just factory workers and drivers that are going to disappear. One technology innovator put it like this: “Tell me something that you think robots cannot do, and I will tell you a time frame in which they can actually do it.”
While that might sound horrible, it might actually be the best thing that’s ever happened to us. The thing is, it’s not that we’re going to lose our jobs. Instead, we won’t even need them anymore. A lot of people in the tech industry are getting ready for a world where we don’t even need to work. In addition to robots, they’re trying to push government to give everyone a basic income so they won’t need to show up at their jobs.
And the governments are listening. Ontario is already testing the idea of basic income to see if it’ll work. Over in Germany, an independently run project called “My Basic Income” is giving a few people US$1,100 a month to see what they’ll do with it. The hope is that people will use their money wisely and spend the extra time on creative projects. But even if they don’t, these experiments will get us ready for a future in which we really don’t have to work anymore.
8. Drive-Through Grocery Shopping
Photo credit: Dahir Insaat YouTube
It’s a hassle climbing into your Rascal scooter to roll around the local Wal-Mart or using that grabbing-stick to pick things off the shelf. It’s more than a man or woman should have to bear.
Fortunately, scientists are trying to fix all that.
A Russian inventor has already patented the idea of a drive-through grocery store. The idea is to put every single product on a rotating belt. That way, you can just park your car, press a few buttons, and get everything you need.
The plan is touted as a way to improve “convenience,” and it sure does - by making it so you never have to stand up.
Drive-through grocery stores are probably going to be available soon. Wal-Mart and Amazon are both interested in the idea, so there’s a good chance there will be one in your neighborhood in the near future.
7. Robots That Cook For You
Once your robot brings food home from the drive-through grocery store, you can’t reasonably be expected to make it yourself. The strain of pouring macaroni into a pot could cause serious injuries.
Fortunately, we’re also working on a robot for that, and it should be out next year.
A company is already building robot arms that will prepare almost any meal you can imagine. Engineers have trained the robo-arms by having them follow the movements of a professional chef. However, the best part is that you don’t have to move at all. These arms are controlled by your iPhone. This way, you can just punch in a code, and a five-star meal will be prepared for you.
Right now, the robotic arms can make up to 2,000 meals, but soon you’ll be able to download more dishes through an app. So the next time you see a good recipe online, you won’t need to learn it yourself. Your robot arms can do it for you.
6. An Enzyme That Prevents Fat
Thanks to a new scientific breakthrough, soon you might be able to shove cake into your face and never worry about calories. How? Well, scientists have recently discovered an enzyme that actually stops sugar from being stored as fat.
Normally, if you shovel down gobs of ice cream cake, all that extra glucose in your body goes into your liver and gets turned into fat cells. See, your body still thinks you live in a tree, so it turns extra sugar into fat reserves. This way, you won’t starve if you can’t find any food next week.
However, if you eat even more sugary treats, your body is poisoned with all that extra glucose. You get bigger, your life gets shorter, and you have a harder time breathing when you go upstairs.
But now scientists have found an enzyme called G3PP. Instead of letting sugar build up and become fat, G3PP turns that sugar into glycerol, which your body can easily excrete.
G3PP also detoxifies the sugar. While eating a lot of sugar can poison your body’s ability to make insulin - and thus give you diabetes - the pill will get rid of the toxins. So in the future, cake might be almost as good for you as eating vegetables.
5. A Machine That Plays With Your Pets
What do you do when your dog wants to play, but you’re too lazy to get up? Well, he can play with a machine! And this isn’t some futuristic device. You can buy this particular invention right now.
Clever (and lazy) inventors have created machines that throw balls for your pets. They understand that picking up a tennis ball, throwing it, and watching your dog run can be pretty exhausting. But now this machine can just shoot balls for your pet all day long.
Amazingly, this isn’t some fringe gizmo. These machines are weirdly popular, and a lot of companies are producing them. So when your dog starts barking, don’t worry. He can hang out with the robots.
4. Lights That Mimic The Sun
In this future world, we probably won’t get out very much. But don’t we need the benefits of the Sun to say alive? As it turns out, inventors have developed something called full-spectrum lights, and they’re meant to be the same as sunlight.
According to the people who create them, the lights are supposed to preserve our eyes by giving a more natural glare. They also release UV radiation, just like sunlight. Also, full-spectrum lights supposedly provide a psychological benefit. They can make you feel better and happier by letting you feel like you’re out in natural light.
There’s some dispute about how much of an impact these lights really have, but the real criticism is that natural light might not affect our mood at all. Some say the so-called “effect” of natural light is only in our minds. In other words, mimicking natural light will make you happier if you think you’re supposed to spend time outside. Of course, once you come to terms with your indoor existence, you won’t even need the Sun anymore. You’ll just embrace the warm, artificial glow of your various screens.
3. A Chair That Drives Around The House
Occasionally, you’ll be sitting at your computer when you suddenly remember that you should probably get up and walk around. But thanks to science, soon you’ll never need to stand again.
Nissan has taken the technology they use in their self-driving cars and put it into office chairs. These chairs are complete with sensors and self-parking technology, and Nissan has already put these seats into practice by having them park at office desks.
Maybe we can use these automated chairs to putter around our homes someday. After our robot hands finish cooking us a nice meal, we can just zoom on over to the table for dinner.
2. Furniture That Moves On Its Own
Wouldn’t life be easier if we lived in a Beauty and the Beast dream world filled with moving furniture that could take care of itself? Fortunately, Stanford University wants to make your wish come true.
Stanford has created a whole set of furniture that obeys your every command. Inventors there have developed couches that move, a table that can set itself, and garbage cans that walk around looking for trash. They’ve even created a cute footstool that slides under your feet at your beck and call. So the next time you need something, you won’t have to walk over to the dresser. The dresser will walk over to you.
1. Robots To Get You A Beer
We’re working toward a beautiful future. In time, drugs will exercise for us, robots will do our chores, and we’ll have no obligations but to roll about on our motorized chairs. The only thing left is to celebrate with an ice cold beer. And the robots will take care of that, too.
Researchers at MIT have developed robots that will gladly get you a cold one. These machines are called “Turtlebots” - there’s a blue one named Leonardo and a red one named Raphael - and their sole duty is to wander around dorm rooms, looking for people who might be thirsty.
The robots are designed to make sure you don’t have to move at all. When you want a drink, you don’t have to press a button, clap your hands, or say a magic word. The robots will come to you. They’re designed so that when they aren’t delivering beer, they’re searching for anyone who might need a drink. Once they find someone potentially in need of a brewski, the robots then give a little prompt. In other words, these machines are basically telling us, “Hey, how about one more? You earned it.”
[Source: Listverse. Edited. Top image added.]