I, Robot (short story)


I, Robot (short story)

"I, Robot" is a science fiction short story by Eando Binder (nom de plume for Earl and Otto Binder) about a robot named Adam Link.It was published well before the unrelated and more famous book "I, Robot" by Isaac Asimov.

It was adapted for an episode of the 1960s science fiction anthology series "The Outer Limits", and again for the 1990s revival of the series. Binder's story was very innovative for its time, one of the first robot stories to break away from the "Frankenstein" clichés.

The story is a robot's confession. Some weeks earlier its builder, Dr. Link, built it in the basement. Link teaches his robot to walk, talk and behave civilly. Link's housekeeper sees the robot just enough to be horrified by it, but his dog is totally loyal to it. The robot is fully educated in a few weeks, Link then names it Adam Link, and it professes a desire to serve any human master who will have it. Soon afterwards, a heavy object falls on Dr. Link by accident and kills him. His housekeeper instantly assumes that the robot has murdered Dr. Link, and calls in armed men to hunt it down and destroy it. They don't succeed; in fact, they provoke the robot to retaliate, both by refusing to listen to it and by accidentally killing Dr. Link's dog. Back at the house, the robot finds a copy of "Frankenstein", which Dr. Link had carefully hidden from the robot, and finally somewhat understands the hysterical prejudice against it. But in the end the robot decides that it simply isn't worth killing several people just to get a hearing, writes its confession, and turns itself off.


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