Given all the hoopla over David Levy's new book, Love and Sex with Robots, perhaps it's time to get a quote on the subject directly from a robotic mouth. Meet Mr. Herbert Televox, "the perfect servant, who is never late or insolent .... " according to this picture's 1929 caption.
Mr. Televox was Westinghouse's original Mechanical Man, but where his grandson Elektro had movie-star good looks, Televox looked like something cobbled together by a bunch of third-graders (third-graders with mad tech skilz but children nonetheless). What he lacked in looks, he made up in literacy. Mr. Televox was a special guest at the American Booksellers' Association convention in 1930. When queried about his favorite book, Mr. Televox named James Thurber's Is Sex Necessary?
Elektro could not be reached for comment.