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In the future, after some apocalyptic events and a lot of bad luck, humankind has risen thanks to robots. In the town where the story happens, each industry (paper-making industry, wood industry, etc) is controlled by a single, very efficient robot, and the team of humans that make sure that robot does the best it can possibly do.

  • Is this too ludicrous? And if it is, what circumstances would make it less ludicrous? Some suspension of disbelief is defintely allowed, so tips to keep that are appreciated as well.
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    $\begingroup$ What someone will and will not find ludicrous is entirely subjective. $\endgroup$
    – sphennings
    Oct 28 '20 at 17:54
  • $\begingroup$ Ruining your suspension of disbelief might be a more appropiate wording for it~ $\endgroup$
    – Sony-Shock
    Oct 28 '20 at 17:59
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    $\begingroup$ Suspension of disbelief is more of a function of delivery (writing/acting/animating/programming/etc...) than it is about the world itself. More importantly whether to suspend disbelief is still subjective. $\endgroup$
    – sphennings
    Oct 28 '20 at 18:07
  • $\begingroup$ I see, I see~ I'll keep it in mind, then. Do you happen to have tips that might help me encourage suspension of disbelief in my readers? $\endgroup$
    – Sony-Shock
    Oct 28 '20 at 18:16
  • $\begingroup$ That's not really the purpose of this site. You may have some better luck asking about suspending disbelief over on Writing $\endgroup$
    – sphennings
    Oct 28 '20 at 18:45
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Many modern factories work this way today - almost the entire production line, from ingestion to final packaging, is automated, with humans performing maintenance, final quality control, and odds-and-ends tasks. There isn't an AI driving the entire process (especially not a "general" AI as is common in SciFi), but the programs driving the machines can report when many things go wrong, and what might need to be looked at.

This is because a lot of tasks are really repeatable, and hence can be readily automated. The biggest issue you're going to face are if this factory is supposed to have survived the apocalypse (because it would need maintenance the entire time), and why there are multiple industry types in the same town: usually these factories are quite large, because the initial investment is quite high (meant to serve more than just the town). Perhaps the town was a demonstration/model town, and you have an AI managing all the factories in the town.

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  • $\begingroup$ Amazing! I did not know that! And it works really well with the setting I'm working with! And within it, there's already answers to why there's many factories in the same town and how they survived the apocalypse, even if it wasn't planned. Answer being they are small robots connected to slightly bigger infrastructures (think human connected to a house). Easy to protect, easy to store. Uses less resources. I hope that does not present many new problems...? In the next episode I want to explore these origins, and knowing these would have been problems will be really useful! $\endgroup$
    – Sony-Shock
    Oct 28 '20 at 18:12
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    $\begingroup$ Note that most machines in a factory will be designed to perform exactly one task, in many cases to such an extent that the machine cannot be used to perform any other task. This is because the simpler you can make the machine, the better. There are robot arms that can be moved and reprogrammed, but you're not going to have a factory filled with android bodies working as if they were humans. Anything that would require "rounds" (walking the entire factory) is out - you want stuff moving as little as possible. $\endgroup$ Oct 28 '20 at 18:27
  • $\begingroup$ That will work as well! The robots usually work in a single place and do not move. As a matter of fact, the one that gets explored is a ball inside a house (modeled after a chapel) that produces paper while controled by an AI in a small body. As mentioned, it is really really tiny. Just very efficient. $\endgroup$
    – Sony-Shock
    Oct 28 '20 at 18:43
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    $\begingroup$ ... realistically, your factory needs to be at least the size of a large house, due to volume requirements (assuming it's only making paper for the town - more and you need a bigger factory. Note that expanding a factory is a major infrastructure change). Note that paper making requires time for soaking/drying. And none of the robots in a factory will be "thinking", and cannot move from their position (requires forklifts or something). The size of an AI body is immaterial if there's any sort of wireless communication, because the AI could just remotely puppet it. $\endgroup$ Oct 28 '20 at 19:39

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