Relatively Speaking

I'm typing it now. reload for more every once in a while.

THIS STORY SUCKS, so it's only there for historical reasons, and because it shows what I was thinking at the time about artificial intelligence. YOU WILL BE BORED.

There was this programmer who, late at night, typed ceaselessly on an enhanced 101 keyboard. His tool was a giant parallel mainframe computer somewhere hundreds of miles away in an environmentally controlled room deep withing an unidentified research center. He had somehow secured the right to use the machine from 11 pm to 3 am every day, thanks to a friend met at an AI convention a few years back.

His first step had taken him into introspection, which ultimately is the root of all excellent programming, for programming is designed to emulate human activity. So he had thought for a long time, his mind staring at a blinking cursor, extrapolating and condensing streams and patterns. Then he undestood what he needed to do. At first it seemed silly, childish even, but the idea kept bugging him so he gave in and typed on the keyboard.

First he modeled a simple environment inside a computer. It consisted of a large box, a series of coordinates in a three-dimensional memory array. The computer's memory allotted him only enough resources to make his box twelve meters long by eight meters wide and five meters high. The resolution was one tenth of one millimeter, or one hundredth of one centimeter, or two hundred and fifty four units per inch. Over the entrie box, in three dimensions, it represented staggering figure of 480 million megabits. That's if each "pixel" held one bit of information. In reality, each required thirty-two bits of information to make one byte, so the actual memory use was 15.4 billion megabits (15.4 Pb). To emulate RealTime, the many thousands parallel processors had to "crunch" all that information 3500 times per second, performing on average about 4,000 bits of information per "pixel." That was the hard part.

Unbeknownst to him was the fact that the computer he was using was an experimental machine designed and built by a major Japanese corporation and that his friend had risen in rank within that company and was now in charge of its laser data processing department. The machine functioned nearly at the speed of light, processing and storing information at the molecular level in an industrial grade diamon briquette. That machine, fifteen years in the making, was he paroxysm of human technology. To the programmer, it was merely an extremely advance silicone machine.

I pause here. must sleep.

Written in 1995.

© 2016 Christopher Mahan