Saturday, December 30, 2006

One weird thing

You've probably seen that meme that has a person list six weird things about themselves. I am stuck for a blogging topic, but too lazy to be arsed with six things, so I've come up with one.

Of course, the question of what falls under the category of "weird" is a bit of a trick. I speak Welsh, I think medieval fayres are awesome, and I follow EastEnders so religiously that I refer to characters as if I know them personally (I am about two dead brain cells away from writing them letters of advice on how to solve their problems: "Stacey, you know that nothing good will come of this thing with Max!"). So, I'm not 100% sure* I'm qualified to judge "weird."

Perhaps that I am so taken with iTunes (a half decade after everyone else) is a bit odd. But for the most part, I don't tend to think that things I do or think are all that weird -- probably because I am the person doing and thinking those things. It's a bit like Catch 22; people who are crazy don't know they are crazy. If they think they are crazy, it's almost certainly a sign that they are not.

So, the fact that I don't tend to think of myself as not weird may be a sign that I am, in fact, very weird. Most likely, though, this is wishful thinking. More likely, I am one of the most boring people on Earth.

In terms of what other people might think is weird, I am either so boring or people are so used to my quirks, that I ceased surprising people years ago. I could list just about any odd thing and people who are close to me would think: "Yeah, sure -- that's not all that weird coming from him."

So, here's my totally un-weird weird thing about me:

I have a science-fiction TV series in my head.

It's about a border-line suicidal space fighter pilot. Because of the accessible nature of electronic information, his branch of the military (which would have to have a cooler name than the usually lame "Space Force" or "Space Marines," but I haven't thought up the name yet. Most likely it would be an acronym) starts putting important information on paper again (written in Sioux). The fighter pilot -- nicknamed "Witke," Sioux for "crazy" -- is given the job of hurtling unescorted (so as to not draw attention) across vast, cold, dangerous stretches of space, delivering various ultra-important messages.

Recognizing that he is already more than a bit psycho (he gets this assignment after being pulled as a squadron leader, having led his group into one too many mismatched fire fights), the yet-to-be-named military branch he works for fits his ship with a beta-version navigational/operating system that is designed to develop a personality of its own. The idea is to give him company on the long, cold (to preserve power and to help avoid detection, most of the time his ship does little more than circulate oxygen, so he's almost always weighed down by cold-weather gear [hence the connection to Heather's kittyhead hat]).

The system learns at an immense rate, so it tends to know everything that can be known, or can learn it in a pinch by gathering information from the future incarnation of the Internet. It is also designed to make itself as compatible and personable as possible to the user, so in short order it develops a female voice (probably with an accent) and Witke names it after some girl he had a crush on as a cadet before she was killed by some habitually-evil alien race that have been warring with Earth for 100 years.

Partially because his mood is erratic, and partially because the software recognises Witke actually enjoys arguing, the two have long, bantering philosophical/humorous conversations as they hurtle through space. They are occasionally interrupted by the need to blow stuff up or narrowly escape certain doom or save the universe. You know how it goes.

Needless to say, this culminates in all sorts of philosophical questions about the nature of reality as Witke "falls in love" with his ship's navigational/operating system, and vice versa. Neither will admit this fact.

At about the same time as this man-software love that dare not speak its name is coming to fruition, the military branch with a cool acronym name decides through other tests that the software -- hard-programmed to be so accommodating and protective of the user -- is a bad idea all around. They order it removed from Witke's ship and all existing versions of the software are deleted.

That's the end of season 1.

The second season starts with Witke in the bar, receiving the equivalent of a text message. The message contains a backup file to his ship's navigational/operating system -- it was sent by his ship, and had been bouncing around the corners of space, making it impossible to trace.

And it goes on from there, with all kinds of possibilities:
- The ship becomes too reckless in actions, because it can always provide a backup of itself, and almost kills Witke.
- An evil-twin version shows up, based on a corrupted version of the file that was bounced around space
- The ship starts to project a hologram of an attractive woman, so it messes with Witke's head even more.
- Through either Star Trek replicator technology or William Gibson microsofts technology, the OS becomes a tangible female form.

*The phrase "100% sure" is there only because I wanted to use the percent sign.

5 comments:

Elimare said...

I'd watch it!

THE PERIODIC ENGLISHMAN said...

Philosophical Outriders Sending Tremendous Messages Everywhere, Nearly.

The elusive acronym, I believe. Or not.

Kind regards etc....

Dave Morris said...

It's obvious that ALL OS, with the moodiness and crashes, are female, so that is quite likely the best scenario.

heatherfeather said...

see, that seems like a good use for the kittyhat, and a relatively engaging scifi show. i'd watch it and knit the hats for the characters.

(your rss feed isn't updating, dearie... and how did you switch to blogger no-longer-in-beta? my blog's still too big...)

Chris Cope said...

I know nothing of RSS feeds. I would assume that whatever you're subscribed to isn't updating because I've gone all beta, yo. I don't know why they've allowed me to go beta -- I'm sure you'll be joining the rest of us soon enough.