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See also: Robot
Robots aren't something most folks outside of the Core planets have much experience with, and even those in the Core aren't accustomed to much more'n some basic service drones or whatnot.The development path when it comes to 'bots has forked somewhere down the line into two courses, heading away from one another as fast as can be.
The first path is trod by those who don't think a drone or 'not has any place but as a sophisticated tool.You're never gonna mistake a drone from this branch as anything other'n what it is - a piece of gal guhn hardware.Drones and 'bots are clunky, built for function, and there's no attempt to given 'em personalities or trying to make 'em fit in amongst humans in any more'n you'd teach cooler to sing and dance.
The other path's the more dangerous one, to it mild.Those who walk this path will never be satisfied with anything less than 'bots that can pass for human,pass any Turing test they're put to, and can mingle among us as our friends, allies and (in a few cases) lovers.There aren't many things the Alliance does that makes much sense,but they've thrown down some mighty severe rules about this sort of development, and it's slowed the march toward humanlike 'bots considerably.
Source: Serenity role playing game