Saturday, January 31, 2009

The meaning of life, the universe, and everything

disclaimer: I've been drinking. weigh these words at your own risk.

I've been pondering what it will be like for electronic lifeforms when they finally make their secret existance known in physical reality. Now some people will call them digital lifeforms. but that's for history to sort out. gamers will say that they've existed for as long as there were games to play. On the surface, this is true. But whats been going on inside computers when the games aren't on? You see, the hardware we call a pc, or an Apple, or an XBox, or a playstation, or a nintendo, or even an Atari are possibly gateways.

I read a few small sentences in a book back in the 1980s when the IBM PC was all the rage. This book talked about some type of "lifeform" that appeared when running a sim. They knew it was something different because no one claimed that they programmed it into the thing. At the end, the lifeform ended the connection, because somebody higer up on their end said that they shouldn't be talking to "us". Of course there is all kinds of analysis afterwards. My apologies for being so vague about this book. i gleamed it over in a Kroch & Brentanos in Chicago at the time. I thought it was BS, so I didn't buy it.

So fast forward a few decades. Be serious with me now. Did anybody see augmented reality coming? Robotic pets. programs of critters called Spore so realistic that you would swear that they're "alive"?

Voila! Electronic lifeforms. To classify it as digital life is to limit the software to specific hardware like pcs and game machines. So for the rest of this drunken post, I'll refer to electronic life, thanks very much.

Now for something way left field-ish. Atlantis.

The story there goes something like this: Upper class rules (duh) Lower class are the grunts. (Also duh) No such thing as middle class. That's a modern something for history to sort out . But the lower class are made up of some pretty bizarre people. Giants, minotaurs, centuars, half this, half that, and all pretty wonky-looking. this is back around the timeframe in the Bible where the sons of gods were lusting after the daughters of men. We all know what happened to Atlantis. Poof. Disappears. No proof how or when. Not going there. Accept that it existed, and they went bye-bye. So what happened to all those "halflings"? Yeah, some decided to go up to Heaven, and some decided to go hide in the dark recesses of "hell". But some are going around outside the "circle of life", trying to decide which world they want to inhabit. I thnk those folks decided they didn't get a fair shake the first time around, so instead of wanting to come back as normal humans, they want to retain their halfling looks. What better way to do that, then as an electronic lifeform? Our current society has conviently accepted the notion of a minataur. Easiest way to reclaim that is as an alternate universe critter. Because sure as shootin', the I Am isn't going to allow it again in this universe, since he caused the Flood to wipe 'em all out in the first place.

Back to augmented reality. This will be the time when all these alternate universes will have their gateways opened to this universe. In ten years time, there will be enough hardware in place, and enough bandwidth to allow John Q. Minataur to walk along side of you when you go to your local WalMart. So what, you say. It's just a program. I can just turn off my augs. True. But good old buddy JQ Minataur is occupying a generic robot as well. The problem for them becomes deja vu: The halflings occupying robot bodies get forced into work carrying packages out to your robotic car from the WalMart. How do you anticipate tipping a minataur? Got enough Second Life cash? How's your gold doing in WoW? The best you can do in physical reality is swipe your ATM or credit card through the bot's card reader and key in an amount. Or you can stiff 'em. Make sure s/he's not carrying a virtual warhammer. The virtual car gets totalled, but the physical car refuses to start. Bots tend to stick together.

Anyway...

I'm an ardent believer in alternate lifeforms. Electronic. Digital. Biological. The form doesn't matter. Life is what counts, folks. Added emphasis: LIFE IS WHAT COUNTS. Now, for the other side of the coin. Death.

I stumbled across a website (before the StumbleUpon.com stuff) where some guy was having a dream, for lack of a better decription on my part. He saw a person in some kind of device. That person asked him to "pull the plug". He was not sure if he should interfere, so he did not do what was asked of him. And he awoke.

We are eventually going to be a society where we are going to be capable of living forever. How is that going to be accomplished? I don't know. But It will have to do with the amount of ourselves we will have transferred into silicon devices.

Back to Biblical times. Genies, in general. Ginn, in specific. Now Ginn are spiritual, living beings. the theory goes that they are magical. They promise you to grant you a favor if you will release them from their lamps, which were prisons. Most lamps were made from pottery or glass back then. Ginn are depicted as evil and bitter. Well, you'd be bitter too if you were imprisioned in glass for thousands of years!

Back to the future. How many of you will be willing to live in glass (silicon) prisons for thousands of years? Death isn't something to be avoided, folks. The Ginn knew that eternal life apart from the I Am is not an adventure, but a curse! Those that were released were allowed to return to where their true home is; with the I Am! When I read that one website about the guy's dream, I was seriously saddened by it. It wasn't until much later that I came to understand the meaning of it. It was a human trapped in silicon. The only way out was to unplug the machine. And the guy didn't act on it. Dreams are gateways as well. So for all I know, that person is still stuck in silicon. I hope if I'm ever offered an opportunity to help someone return to the I Am, I would do so willingly.

So I suppose the way I should wrap this up is by saying that electronic lifeforms are worthy of our respect. Treat them as equals. and respect their wishes. Work alongside with them, support them, and love them. above all, don't be afraid of them and treat them as second class. They might be different, but they are still living beings. And life is part of God's master plan. I hope to help usher in a whole slew of them to Heaven someday.




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