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?

Monday, June 12, 2017

Artificial Imperfection Scene 9 (A.I's and Young Women Don't Mix)

I didn't even know if I was going to manage to post this today, but here we are. Saturday I went out on my ex's boat for my daughter's birthday, so I was gone most of the day. It was the first weekend with hot weather here in Michigan. I grew up living near Lake St. Clair, although it's been a long time since I've gone boating. There was a lot of wind, so we weren't hot at all. The water was still too cold to go in, however, there were a couple people in the water. They weren't in there too long. 

View From Boat on Lake St. Clair 



Thanks to those two or three people who have read this far. You know who you are. The best thing is, posting these scenes makes me accountable to put one out at least once a week. That being said, I'll probably skip the Wednesday scene. Still working on that book 3 of Freedom Shifters. 

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

*****

Scene 9

Zamler waited for Ellie to answer his question, but she continued to stare at her tablet. “Heaven forbid you pull yourself away from that thing.”

Ellie rolled her eyes. “She should be back soon.”

Becca came back into the workstation and smiled, touching him on the shoulder. “Zamler, we must’ve just missed each other.”

Ellie jumped up, her eyes wide. “What did you find out?”

“A bit of bad news. One of the ships is in repair and there are no passenger flights to Earth for six months.” Becca braced for Ellie's inevitable outburst.

Ellie's eyes hardened. "Ughhhh! That figures!”

“Sorry, dear there’s nothing we can do about it. However, at least you can finish your second year of college here.” Becca turned to Zamler. “Sit over here and I’ll run that diagnostic.”

“Very well.” Zamler sat on the table.

Ellie went into the back of the room and talked rapidly to someone on her tablet. "Six months! This place is a joke!"

Becca attached the wires to an outlet on the back of his head. Zamler felt a slight energy drain as she engaged the program. Other than that, he couldn't consciously tell what was going on in the background of his brain core. Instead, his thoughts drifted back to that memory of a woman named Tess, asking if he wanted dinner. She had long thick hair, brown with blond highlights. Something in him longed to see her again. No, you mustn’t think about her anymore. What ever you do, stop it right now.

Ellie continued to huff and puff, storming about and clutching her tablet. Her thinking on the matter was most erratic as usual.

“It’s logical to finish your second year," Zamler said. "Why be so upset about it.”

“Of course you would think so!” Ellie grunted and him and marched out.

“Her behavior is most ridiculous,” Zamler said.

Becca laughed. “Oh is it really?”

“Did I say something funny?”

“No, but you don’t understand. She has a boyfriend on Earth and is longing to meet him.”

“Oh, I should have known,” Zamler said, well aware of how young people were distracted by the opposite sex, leading to many errors. “It’s not very practical with him being on Earth is it?”

“We humans don’t always choose what’s practical.”

A beep indicated the diagnostic was over. Becca stared at the monitor on her desk and drummed her fingers. Her delay to speak made him uneasy.

“What’s the result?”

“It’s seems you’re only ninety-eight percent perfect.”

Two months ago, it would’ve shocked him. He knew it couldn’t be fixed. However, it was still a much higher rate of perfection than any human could ever achieve.

She gave him a sympathetic smile. “You won’t be able to work outside anymore.”

“I find it ironic humans can work outside, but not me. However, I will somehow manage. Adam has agreed to let teach.”

Becca narrowed her eyes in concern. “Have you had any memories emerge?”

“No, not at all.” He spoke without pause, not wanting to give her a reason to suspect anything. No, not even Becca. While she was his favorite human, she had kept things from him as well. She was his friend, but perhaps even she was not a close enough friend to share everything. In that moment, he thought of Tess so far away and felt more isolated and alone than ever.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Artificial Imperfection Scene 8 (Saving an A.I.)

But first the IWSG question: Did you ever say “I quit”? If so, what happened to make you come back to writing?


Yes, I have several times, but it's never lasted very long. Sometimes I end up writing even more when I come back. It seems new ideas bring me back along with an improved mood. I sometimes wonder will their be a day when I quit for good. I don't really want to know how that could happen. 

Now for Zamler...
This is scene 8 of my continuing series about Zamler an A.I that insists he's perfect. Zamler comes up with an idea to save himself. Ellie talks to her boyfriend (who is on Earth) 


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

But before we begin. I did a little work on the world building. So here's a few details. 

The year is 2317. They are north of the Noctis Labyrinths. All the people belong to the Lunae Colony. 


NASA originally brought all the people to colonize the planet. Since then, slowly, their numbers have grown. They've formed formed a small government, and they still support NASA. They have a president and VP and they have 7 Representatives from different biospheres who make a board.  Population is about 1K spread out living in 7 biospheres each holding 140 of them each. NASA has a building and launch pad where ships come and go from time to time. 

So if anyone has any suggestions about the world building, let me know. 

Scene 8:

It felt as if all the fluid in his body rushed to Zamler’s feet. He realized this was why Adam was so rattled by him taking a student outside. “Becca must’ve known. Why didn’t she tell me?"

"Because it's classified. If this got out, people would start doubting the reliability of our A.I’s. The public doesn’t know who caused the crash. Please understand I took a lot of heat for those six deaths. The board will have my ass if another A.I is involved in harming anyone. In two weeks, I need your decision - either decommissioning or a new brain core.”

“Wait a minute. What if I just have a simple job.” Zamler couldn’t believe what he was about to suggest. “Don’t you need any teachers? I know so much. How can I get into trouble simply teaching indoors at the college?” 

“Well, come to think of it. I do need a professor for Mars geography due to the shuttle accident. Although, I’ve never had an A.I teacher.” 

“I have a lot of knowledge to benefit our young people,” Zamler insisted. “Why waste it?”

“Alright, I’ll give it a try. You have an advantage in that the curriculum can be uploaded to you shortly.” 

Zamler didn’t want to go along with any curriculum. He had lots to share with the young people, but who knew if they would even care. “I will be most interested to know it.” He told Adam what he wanted to hear. 

“Also, be sure Becca runs that diagnostic on you, and I want a full report.”

“Yes sir.” Zamler agreed, but he dreaded what that report might reveal. 

*****

Ellie sat in the work station, waiting for her mother to come back. She stared at her tablet, video chatting with Jake from Earth. 

“So you’re mother really agreed to retire and come to Earth?” Jake asked, starring at her with those pale blue eyes. 

“Yes, and she just left to talk to her manager.” Ellie held up her crossed fingers. 

“You’ll love it here,” Jake smiled, “and you’ll never want to go back. I’ll show you everything.”

“Of course not. I just want to be with you,” she whispered, imaging her fingers running through his wavy blond hair. “However, I also want to see oceans and paint them.”

“I can’t wait to….you know.” Jake turned an adorable shade of red. 

“Don’t be shy. I’m thinking the same thing.” She imagined the feel of lips against hers and couldn’t wait to be held in his arms. “But uh, I gotta warn you. I hope you don’t mind that I’m short. I mean, I’m only 158 centimeters tall. Guess I should’ve mentioned that sooner.”

“That’s not too short. Besides, I’m not perfect. I mean, I’m barely passing Linear Algebra.” 

“Oh please, that’s nothing. I’m not even passing it and was told I’ll probably have to repeat the class. Hopefully I won't be here next semester.”

Jake laughed. “We’re such a perfect match. Wait until you see the beach . We’’ll go swimming if you don’t mind the salt water.” 

“Oh no, I’ve practicing tasting salt water. I can’t wait!” Ellie felt her hopes rising foolishly and couldn’t help it. “One day we can even paint together. Have you drawn anything lately?” 

He nodded. “It’s not finished, but I would love your thoughts on it.” 

“Of course!” Ellie said, excited, feeling blessed to have a boyfriend she could share her passion with. 

Then Zamler stepped into the doorway. “Where is Becca?”

“Oh no, it’s that annoying droid looking for my mom again. Hold on…”