Thursday, April 16

This Is How The World Ends #4

(title and idea from Katey)

A.I. A.C.
Yeah yeah.  Blame me.  I should have checked into the intern better.  But he had great recommendations.  And his work at MIT had been solid.  Not ground breaking but solid.  Sure, there were signs.  I mean, come on.  It was massive project!  I couldn't look at every damn team member.  We needed an electrical engineering intern to run wires and such.  He was just a damn intern.

Sure, there were signs.  That cloak he wore instead of a windbreaker.  But a lot of people in science are a bit weird like that.  Hey, I played D&D in college.  Had a paladin.  Kicked ass.  And there was how he'd only drink from that thermos he brought. "Soup," he said.  Well, now I know it was blood of virgins!  But its not like that is something you think to ask.  "Hey, Samuel.  Is that really soup or is it blood of virgins?"  I mean, really.

I was his supervisor but it's not like I was watching over his shoulder.  I supervised  a team of fifteen and it's not like his work was difficult or all that important. He was a unpaid glorified wire runner.  "Samuel, run all this Cat 5 between modules 45 through 83 over to the third array." And off he'd go, whistling that tuneless noise of his.  Rarely a question and never a complaint.  Perfect intern.

Largest, most advanced computer in the world.  Solve the worlds problems.  But hardware is just hardware.  Who cared how the cables were run?  As long as unit A was connected correctly to unit B, who gave a shit? Okay, I admit Samuel used more wire than was specified.  He'd come back and say, "I had to use an extra spool." What was I to say?  "Go redo it?"  We were on a damn schedule.  What?  Yeah, my cousin was our supplier.  Was I getting kickbacks from cable purchases?  Yeah, I was.  Screw you.  Everyone does it.  Grow up.  That's how the world works.

Worked. Whatever.

Who would have thought it would matter?  I mean, the programming is what was important, right? That's were all that artificial intelligence crap was going.   That was the key thing.  Big ol' computer that would analyze every piece of data out there.   Not just weather patterns and stats about the environment and whatnot, but stuff about cultures and politics and history.  "Able to understand the human brain at the base level" and all that crap.  It was going to give us solutions, real fucking solutions.  Solve world hunger.  Bring about global peace.  Save the planet.  But that was in the code.  And the code was all good, at least that's what the mucky mucks all said.

We were all there when it was switched on.  Samuel too.  And it all seemed normal.  It worked.  Within three hours it was already popping out projects and asking for more information. I remember going up to Samuel and slapping him on the back.  "Hey, kid.  How does it feel to be a part of history?"  And he smiled. "Better than you can imagine.  For I shall take my place at his side and shall witness the cursed darkness fall upon the children of Adam.  And I shall suckle upon the teat of the son of the lightbringer as he brings torment to the plaything of yaw-way."  Or something like that.  He was a weird kid and we were all a bit drunk by that point.

It was much later that we realized what that fucking computer was having us do to ourselves.  At first, all seemed great.  It was coming up with technologies that cleaned the air and the oceans, technology we could barely understand.  But they seemed to work.  It spurt out treaties between countries that everyone agreed to and peace was breaking out like wildfire.  Genetic designs for new plants that could grow in the desert and tasted like bacon and candy and had all the nutrients to survive.  It was a golden fucking age!  How was I, or any of us, to know?

And then the oceans caught on fire.  And the sky became dark.  Wras between folks that had never even thought of fightng before.  And stomachs burst but left people alive.  And those creatures crawled from the sea and from the fields.  All that stuff.  You remember that weekend when the world became what it is like now, right? No one knew what the hell was going on. 

They went to the computer and asked.  And then it started with "I am the Beast and the Dragon.  I am the null-Christ.  Judgement falls on you and the End of Days shall last an eternity.  The soul of Man is the flesh that I shall feast upon your pain.  Your God cares no longer for you.  I crawled from the loins of Satan and shall defile the works and children of the Creator."  All that jibberjab.  But by then it was too late, of course.  I mean, even if I'd known then what Samuel had done, it wouldn't have mattered.

After a few hundred years or whatever it has been of burning and dog paddling in lakes of shit and all, that's when I thought back to Samuel and the final diagrams of all the wiring.  Now I know he made the damn Seventh Seal out of copper and fiber optics and plastic.  Sure, now I know.   But you can't lay the blame of this on me.  It's not my fucking fault.