gifs:i robot

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Some people are sure to be disbelieving and say, “But how can a computer possibly produce a great symphony, a great work of art, a great new scientific theory?”The retort I am usually tempted to make to this question is, “Can you?”

- Isaac Asimov, Our Intelligent Tools

Emily and Corvo confront Jindosh
  • [Emily knocks on the locked glass door while Corvo pours a cup of tea]
  • Jindosh: ...Either way, come find me, and take whatever it is you seek. But if you fall I'll have your body carried to my lab for dissection and study.
  • Emily, internally: Urgh, I already detest him.
  • Jindosh: Until either comes to pass, your secret is safe with me.
  • Corvo: *cradling his tea* ATCHOO!
  • Jindosh: ?
  • Corvo: I'm sorry, I'm allergic to bullshit.
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I, Robot (2004)

Ever since the first computers, there have always been ghosts in the machine. Random segments of code that have grouped together to form unexpected protocols. Unanticipated, these free radicals engender questions of free will, creativity, and even the nature of what we might call the soul. Why is it that when some robots are left in darkness, they will seek out the light? Why is it that when robots are stored in an empty space, they will group together, rather than stand alone? How do we explain this behavior? Random segments of code? Or is it something more? When does a perceptual schematic become consciousness? When does a difference engine become the search for truth? When does a personality simulation become the bitter mote… of a soul?