Artificial Intelligence Intelligent Design Science fiction

Eric Holloway’s latest short story: Mindtrap

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Is immortality worth risking the unthinkable? — Trumind serial, part 5

This was the moment of truth. Johann had come to this strange place on the promise of immortality. He didn’t believe in any religious nonsense but he also didn’t want to die. The prospect of death was the one thing that brought back that sense of unease and he tried to ignore it as much as possible. In fact, if he was honest with himself, Johann would admit that he was terrified of death. He’d do anything to avoid the blackness beyond night that would eventually engulf everything. So, if this weird bed and the somewhat dangerous-looking pyramid could stave off nightfall a little longer, Johann would do it. He lay down.

Flim quickly turned his back to hide the uncontrollable jerk of his face. He could feel another soft, maniacal laugh coming on but had to contain it for just a little longer. He sauntered over to the control panel on the other side of the room and flicked the switch. All lights went out, completely. The room was pitch black.

Eric Holloway, “Mindtrap” at Mind Matters News

Hey, no spoilers.

Readers may know Eric better from posts like Does information theory support design in nature?

Also, Adam Nieri offers a review of a recent sci-fi short, Sprites:

Will plausible robots replace movie stars?:

Adam Nieri: A short film prepares us to think about it

The conflict focuses on Leslie’s conflict with co-director/producer on how to understand the Sprites. Leslie believes that Sprites are merely puppets doing what they are told or programmed to do. They can’t feel the overwhelming emotions that humans feel and therefore can never truly replace a human actor. Further, she argues that humans experience, react, feel, believe, love, hate, know, and wonder unlike any coded AI. This intrinsic emotional array is what makes humans so effective at acting; because they are truly capable of understanding the emotions their character is presenting.

Karen, on the other hand, argues that Sprites are a great replacement for human actors because, whether or not they empathize or sympathize, they save money. Karen simply insists that Leslie must consider using Sprites in the film before hiring a human actor. The film avoids a boring monologue about how advanced Sprite AI is, probably on purpose and to good effect.

Adam Nieri, “Will plausible robots replace movie stars?” at Mind Matters News

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