Update on the vice president's dopey comment
XKCD: "Tech Support"

India grows 15 billion coconuts per year . . .

. . . all harvested by hand. (India is third in world production, behind Philippines and Indonesia.) It's hard work. As economic opportunities in India increase, fewer people want to do it. So the Kerala state government is offering a 1 million rupee prize to "to devise a machine that could ascend a coconut tree and harvest the nuts, thereby doing away with the need for human climbers."