Common Knowledge

Everybody knows that in the future there will be androids which are 1) super-strong, 2) super-smart and 3) implacable foes on mankind. This is so certain and so obvious that to deny it seems ridiculous, even though when you stop and think about it, there are no such things at all in the world and absolutely no certainty that there ever will be. A science fiction writer who posits a future without them or imagines them differently, however, is easily looked on as a sort of heretic or atheist. How does this happen?

How do ideas get so cemented into our cultures that they become nearly immovable fixtures? We are already still loaded down with vampires, demons, ghosts and werewolves, yet we pile on ever more impossible evil beings (to go along with the impossible good ones, the saints and gods and heroes). 

Cultures can become as landfills stuffed with these ideas and there seems to be no way of cleansing them. It all piles up and at best you get an endless recycling of the same old nonsense. 

Why would robots have bad breath? Impossible! Such a notion would be greeted with outrage, but a Terminator … oh yeah, of course that’ll happen!

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