50 | 1st Place

Tending to her flower patch, BioBot #5338 counted 1,994 bees – up from last year. She greeted each one, commending them on jobs well done.

This story was awarded 1st place in our 48 HOUR FLASH FICTION CONTEST. Annabelle Woodger is worried about the bees. This story was inspired by her research into conservation efforts and the developments of bee robots to support organic bees. Giving this a positive twist, she has created a positive future where bees and robots live harmoniously. It made our judges wonder and imagine a world in which this was possible, just as a story seed should. Congratulations Annabelle! // Alex Massey

//Annabelle travels everywhere with a small bee toy in her bag named Beatrice. Sometimes she posts pictures of her on Twitter @yayannabelle//

37

Grateful for new friends, companion bots eased human loneliness everywhere. They began by making cookies that tasted of childhood.

Humanity is driven to seek companionship and with the invention of humanoid robots, companion bots aren’t far behind. Annabelle Woodger has taken this concept and put a childlike spin on it. However, their scifi is not that far from reality. Currently, several companion bots exist, including Toyota’s Kirobo Mini and SoftBank Robotics robot Pepper. While these bots may help ease human loneliness, their ties to the Internet of Things raise further questions about ethics and the potential for misuse of conversational robots.//Alex Massey

//Annabelle Woodger loves making things with words and/or pictures. You can find her at @yayannabelle, passionately yelling about stuff.//