WAMU 88.5 : The Kojo Nnamdi Show

Robots & Pop Culture

Long before robots became a pop culture staple, artists were creating artificial humans in literature, images and early films. The introduction of the robot - and its evolution from fiction to reality - continues that rich tradition and allows authors and artists new frameworks and freedoms for exploring fundamental questions about humanity. We consider the role of these figures - whether cyborg, android or operating system - in our culture and what they tell us about ourselves.

Film's Best Robots

In "Her," Theodore Twombly, played by Joaquin Phoenix, falls in love with "Samantha," the personality behind an advanced operating system.

This is among the best scenes between Hal and Dave in Stanley Kubrick's 1968 film: '2001: A Space Odyssey.'

Film makers offered a behind-the-scenes look at the making of the 2004 dystopian action film "I, Robot," starring Will Smith and Sonny the robot.

And who can forget C3PO, perhaps the most famous and beloved of movie robots? Watch some of his best moments below.

NPR

'The End of the Tour' Offers A Hint Of David Foster Wallace's Inner Struggle

A new film revisits a five-day interview that took place between writer David Foster Wallace and a reporter for Rolling Stone in 1996. Critic David Edelstein calls it a "very good movie."
NPR

Coffee Art: When A Spill Turns Into A Masterpiece

Ever splashed yourself with coffee? Then you know its staining powers. But where some see a ruined shirt, others have found a canvas.
NPR

Meet The California Family That Has Made Health Policy Its Business

On Medicare's 50th birthday, two brothers who helped get it off the ground tell their stories. A younger member of the Lee family is at the helm of Covered California, the state insurance exchange.
NPR

Debris Found In The Indian Ocean May Be From Missing Malaysia Airlines Jet

Investigators are studying a piece of debris found on the French island of RĂ©union in the Indian Ocean. They believe it could be from Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, which disappeared in March 2014. NPR has more about the debris, and what it could tell us about the missing airplane.

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