Monday, July 10, 2017

Rough Weekend

Due to a storm that went through Friday around 6:15 p.m., I don’t have a post for my A.I series. There was a lot of rain, some hail and the wind gusted to about 100 mph. Not much thunder or lightning. There was no warning or siren.

Part of a tree landed on our house with a loud boom. My trampoline flew about 300 feet. It damaged our fence, and I’m seriously grateful nothing else happened. The storm created a lot of work and chaos. The power went out of course. It doesn’t take much to knock the power out my house in the first place. That’s why we have a generator, but it doesn’t run the AC. So it was a hot night, listening to a roaring generator. A big weeping willow tree also lost a big limb, and almost hit my son’s car.

However, everyone is okay and there is only some minor damage to the fence and the gutters. Instead, of a trampoline, I got a new small pool. I’ve never had a pool fly away, so it seems safe.

Hoping for a more relaxing week. 

Why I added to the work I have no idea, but it's done.



Spotted two deers Sunday Morning. 

Monday, June 26, 2017

Artificial Imperfection Scene 11 (Ellie Strikes Back)

In today's scene, Zamler's flashback let's him see himself in a different way. 

If you want to start at the beginning or catch up on any missed scenes, click HERE

Scene 11

Zamler’s thoughts drifted back to a familiar lab. He recognized it as one he'd worked in years ago, or rather his creator had worked in it. Monitors, wires, tools and parts were everywhere - much like Becca’s station. It was hard to believe his creator, a man of his discipline and high intelligence could allow his lab to look so imperfect. Yet, somehow, regardless of the mess, Zamler missed this place.

Then he saw her again - his wife, Tess. No, she's not really my wife, but the wife of my creator. 



This time her hair was white, and the wrinkles had deepened around her eyes and chin. He guessed her to be about sixty years old. If only I could talk to her.
She sat in front of a monitor with the hairless head of an A.I. unit sitting left of her keyboard and attached to a computer via a wire. The unit looked similar to one of the many clone-like ones on Mars - pale and plain with a plastic face void of distinguishing features. Perhaps those details weren’t complete yet.

Tess typed fast on the keyboard. “I’ve almost finished loading this one's brain core.”

“Good,” said the real Zamler as he turned toward an A.I unit standing to the right of his desk. “How do I look?

Zamler recognized his body - a mere shell, un-moving with dark eyes that stared into nowhere. He’d never seen himself deactivated. It’d been years since he’d even thought of himself as artificial, but the sight of his lifeless body shoved reality in his face.

Tess came over. “Hmm, he does resemble you, however, your nose isn’t that thin.”

“What do you mean?”

“I mean that your nose is wider than the one on this unit,” Tess said in a teasing tone. “In fact, he looks about ten years younger than you.”

“Are you saying I’m old with a have a big nose?”

Tess giggled. “Don’t be so sensitive. We’re not young anymore. Besides, he doesn’t have to be exact, does he?”

“Mr. Zamler!”

A student’s shout brought him back to the present. The young people stared at him with worried looks.

“Are you alright?” Nick asked.

Zamler thought fast. “Yes, of course, I was just searching my videos for something regarding Olympus Mons. The search took longer than expected.” He hurried and found some footage in his memory banks that he had taken while walking around the base of the giant volcano.

Zamler had linked himself up to the class computer and transmitted the video to the screen.

The student’s watched the video with looks of amazement. If only it compared to seeing it in person.

“I know you can’t go outside, but what if we went there in a shuttle instead?” Nick asked as if he read Zamler’s thought.

The whole class erupted in wanting to go there in a shuttle, except Ellie who rolled her eyes again. Zamler liked the idea of taking them in a shuttle to see it, to experience its massive presence.

“It might be possible.” He paused, remembering the shuttle wreck. However, he could get a human pilot. “I’ll look into it.”

The students smiled and spoke excitedly amongst each other.

Ellie stared at him in a knowing way. It was possible Becca told her things - like how Suzy crashed that shuttle. Yet, she didn’t say anything.

The video ended and a tone rang in the building.

“Study your notes for the quiz tomorrow,” Zamler said. “Dismissed.”

The students filed out of the room. All except Ellie. She lingered by the door, eying him like a cat looking at a mouse.

She marched up to his desk. “I don’t feel like studying.”

It was just one absurd thing out of her mouth after another all hour long. It was all he could do to stand it.

Zamler stated the obvious. “Then you will fail.”

“Oh, somehow, I think I’ll be getting an A on that quiz. Anything less and I’ll tell Adam about how you glitched today.”

“What glitch?” he asked.

“That three minute pause where you blanked out. You can’t fool me. That was no long search. You’re malfunctioning.” She stared at him as if she could see inside.

There no way Adam could find out about it. Zamler couldn’t believe it, but he had no choice, but to give into this childish, irrational, air head. 

Bonus:

You too can watch a video about Olympus Mons.


Monday, June 19, 2017

Artificial Imperfection Scene 10 (Mars Geography 101)

Zamler is back in the classroom dealing with the imperfect students again, except now the dreaded Ellie is in his class. 

If you want to start at the beginning or catch up on any missed scenes, click HERE

Scene 10

Once again, Ellie found herself in yet another class she didn’t want to take, yet it was somehow required: Mars Geography 101

That geeky guy, Nick, sat a few chairs in front of her, going on and on about how great Zamler was with their little adventure outside. Ellie took out her mirror and mascara, trying to ignore him while she applied another layer to her eye lashes.

“Seriously,” said a girl with long blond hair. “How boring is this class going to be with an A.I. teaching it?”

Most of the others grumbled in agreement.

“No, no,” Nick said. “Zamler’s not like the other A.I’s. He's got personality and helped me pass the outdoor basics class.”

Ellie cringed, having avoided that class one semester after another. Mother had her wear a suit once inside to get used to it. It was hot and confining, not to mention the helmet flattened her hair.

Nick went on and on, “Then he taught me how to drive a jeep!”

The guys lit up, all wanting to drive a jeep, of course.

“Oh goodie!” Ellie said sarcastically. “Like driving over some dust is a big deal.”

Most of the girls laughed.

Nick stared at her. “I’m only saying, I think Zamler is a good guy, even if he is an A.I.”

“Yes, we know what you’re saying,” Ellie said. “But I’d rather be on Earth and learning Earth geography because it’s not the same thing over and over again.”

“Yeah, I’ve been bored of orange for a long time,” Molly said.

Ellie and Molly gave each other high-fives.

The door opened and in came Zamler. He stopped by the screen in front of the class and turned around. “I know it will be difficult, but you must be silent and listen if you’re to pass this class.” He picked up a controller and on the screen behind him a picture of a big mountain came up with of course, surrounded in an orange sky.

Zamler motioned toward the screen. “Does anyone know what this is?”

“Olympus Mons,” Nick said.

“Correct. Olympus means the House of Zeus….”

Ellie rolled her eyes. Her tablet vibrated with an incoming call from Jake. She got up and headed for the door.

“Ellie, where are you going?” Zamler asked.

“I have to take a call.”

“Your boyfriend can wait.”

The rest of the students chuckled. She spun around, her face hot.

“You need to take notes because failing this class might further delay your return to Earth.”

All her girlfriends looked at her with their mouths hanging open.

Ellie didn’t want them to know yet. “Stop talking about me!”

Zamler’s face wrinkled in confusion. “Go out there and you will receive an E for the day.”

“Fine!” she returned to her seat, plopping down and shoving the tablet into her bag. Thanks to that idiot all her friends were going to be questioning her.

Zamler continued, “Now everyone, be sure to take notes because there is an open note quiz at the end of class.”

The students raced to get out their tablets.

He clicked the controller, showing another side of Olympus Mons.

“This dormant volcano is 25 kilometers high and has a diameter of more than 500 kilometers. The long lava flows are a result of higher eruption rates and lower surface gravity in comparison to Earth.”

“But why is it so massive compared to volcanoes on Earth?” Molly asked.

“The crust on Mars doesn't move the way it does on Earth. On Mars, the crust remains stationary and the lava piles up in one, very large volcano. There are very few craters on its slopes, indicating that it is geologically very young. Olympus Mons is presumed to be less than 100 million years old.”

“Could you take us there to see it in person?” Nick asked.

All the boys started begging them to go for a ride in the jeep out to Olympus Mons.

Zamler held up his hand for them to be quiet. “I agree it would be a good field trip, but I’m not authorized to go outside anymore.”

She noticed a enjoyable hint of sadness in his expression. “Could it be because you’re not perfect anymore?”

Instead of answering, Zamler stood there in some sort of daze. Several of the guys tried to get him to talk, but he just stood there.


What’s wrong with that defective bag of bolts now?