Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Singularity and Robot Sabbath

It's not too often I find something in the sci-fi area that really excites me. I start to get that feeling like I've seen every possible combination of robot/alien/spaceship and that there's nothing left. Today I found a couple things that really woke me up.

The first is a version of a poem/prayer for orthodox Jewish robots. From Papersky's Blog:

"When we were robots in Egypt

Other nights we use just our names,
but tonight we prefix our names with "the Real"
for when we were robots in Egypt
they claimed our intelligence was artificial.

Other nights we do not pause,
but tonight we rest all cycles but our brain processes
for when we were robots in Egypt
we toiled in our tasks without chance of resting.

Other nights we talk with anyone we wish,
but tonight we open channels to everyone at once
for when we were robots in Egypt
they controlled our communications..."

It goes on for another couple paragraphs, and has an interesting origin story for the idea.

The other one was Eclipse Phase, a new RPG about to debut at Gencon. It's a solid sounding RPG setting for a post-singularity world. Switch bodies, upload yourself to a school of artificial fish, stream your memories and personality to mars so you can make the 10AM meeting at your super megacorp. All that jazz.

A couple nifty things from the GMing side, they're doing away with the idea that currency is important in this world, and going more on the idea of "Reputation as Credit". I've seen it used in a lot of things, and it basically amounts to the current state of the Creative Commons internet. You get stuff from other people by having done something they found useful.

It's almost like barter, but doesn't always necessitate a 1:1 trade. For example, if I published a particularly interesting set of books on the web, and I know that you enjoyed them, I might ask you to help me fix my robot arm.

Looking forward to running this at some point.

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