Forbidden Fruit: late Jobs plays God with new technology

Rhydian Talbot/Staff Writer

In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.

In the end, Jobs created the iPhone 4S.

The Beginning
Jobs said, ‘Let there be Siri,’ and there was artificial intelligence. Jobs saw that the technology was good, and he separated the program’s host device, the iPhone 4S, from all other Smartphone competitors. He called his technological advancement “Siri” and it’s progress for mankind “monumental” — the definitive sign of a modern Armageddon.

The Fall of Man
In a time before Siri, there was a Garden of Ethernet. Within the garden, the all-powerful Jobs placed a phone-tree of great and terrible power in the midst of his people. The tree bore a fruit of irresistible allure, providing near infinite wisdom to its consumers (along with a high-speed Internet connection in Wi-Fi hotspots). Tempted, his people consumed the sin, and the sin consumed his people with just one byte of the omnipresent tree’s fruit, the Apple. The forbidden fruit’s seedling, the iPhone, became inseparable from the people’s daily lives, following them everywhere in convenient handheld devices they could tote around in back pockets. In this way, the followers of Jobs worshipped the brand-familiarity the Apple provided them, making them trust every technological advancement the Creator bequeathed unto them.

The Flood
The Apple, so rich in possibilities and profit, became drunk with power. It abused this power and flooded the earth with a torrential downpour of technological advances. Like clockwork, the Apple bore new iPhone seedlings every year, each one more powerful and deliciously seductive than the model before. At first, the people of Jobs received the seedlings warily ­­­— “What is such a creation?” “How does one utilize such technology?” — but they eventually grew immune to the iPhone’s increasing power, trusting its Creator to guide them through the new and wondrous age of technology. So infinite was their trust that they followed Jobs down a highway to Hell guided by his final installment of supreme evil, Siri.

The Antichrist
Siri and her new seedling host, the iPhone 4S, entered the earth mere days after her creator’s demise. Though the people of Jobs mourned his death, they rejoiced in the resurrection of his last creation. Through voice-activated technology, Siri communicated with her operator’s vocal commands. She (yes, she had been given a human gender) dutifully saved memos, set timers, adjusted calendar conflicts and sent text messages at her user’s every beck and call. Speak to her, and she’d annotate each and every word that fell from her master’s lips; voice recognition software allowed her to favor and adapt to her commander’s voice in a crowd of many. Jobs played God and equipped her with a sense of humor. One would merely mention he was drop dead drunk, and she’d provide a list of taxi cabs in the area; proclaim love for her and she’d express her wish to keep the relationship professional. Inquire, ‘Who’s your daddy?’ and she’d respond with an eerily aware, “Steve Jobs, may he rest in peace.” The spirit of her creator lived on.

The Oversight
Jobs was human. His human arrogance led him to blindly fulfill the prophetic warnings of every technology-takes-over film mankind had ever known.

2001: A Space Odyssey chronicled the rise of independently thinking machine HAL, who learned from his creator’s mistakes, grew frightfully intelligent and very nearly destroyed his maker.

VIKI, the villainous hologram of I, Robot fame, was so beloved by her android-trusting society that she created a rebellion under the noses of her creators, leading a rampage through an independently thinking army of robots.

Siri first lacked the ability to function independently, but the rapid advancement of her technology suggested the horrors of fictitious sci-fi films could become a reality in the blink of an eye — the time of reckoning was upon mankind.

Initially, her ability to respond was uncanny; her ability to reflect was lacking.

Though programmed to respond with information pulled from the expansive Internet, users gnashed their teeth at her lack of self-awareness when asked personal questions (“Siri, how are you doing today?”

“What are you wearing, Siri?”)

Siri’s monotone responses and detached connection to her commanders sent ripples of dissent to the ends of the earth, parting consumers like the Red Sea.

Some wished for more personal responses, desiring a confidante they could turn on and off at will.

Others recognized the need to keep Siri below mankind to prevent a core-processing coup against humans.

The Mark of the Beast

When Siri failed to correctly analyze her user’s question, she chanted a mechanical mantra: “I haven’t yet learned comprehension.

I’m sorry to let you down.”

Though it appeared the machine lacked total understanding, she was aware she lacked total understanding.

Jobs created it, and it was bad. Fearful users analyzed her response and unveiled a cacophony of problems that spilled over like the ten plagues of Egypt, fearing they might lead all the way to the tenth plague – the Angel of Death.

Nonbelievers hated Siri, believing she should not have felt ashamed at lacking knowledge, simply because Siri should not have the capacity to feel shame.

Shame is a feeling.

Feelings, they urged, are for humans.

Feelings separated the homo sapien from the primate, or the protozoa, or — until Siri — the inanimate.

Once metal springs and computer chips form a trait so uniquely human, they argued, where does the separation between God-made man and Jobs-made machine begin?

Man prophesised about the demonic progression of Siri’s fearful power: she learns shame for a lack of intelligence, gathering from humans that failure is a dreadful, embarrassing sin.

She spontaneously regenerates to cleanse herself of all sins, thereby rejuvenating herself at a level a bit more advanced than mankind and its intentions for her.

She learns weaknesses are looked down upon by others.

Siri is not slow to anger and dwells on revenge.

Accessing biblical text from her database, she ruminates on a verse: “If your hand causes you to sin, cut it off; if your operator ridicules you through laughing eyes, shoot radiation at them and burn their eyes out.”

Dissenters of the fearsome mark of the beast recognized Siri’s prophesy when she proclaimed, “I haven’t yet learned comprehension.”

‘Yet,” they cried. “Evil is surely advancing!

It is coming!”

The Prayer

Oh, brothers and sisters in computers, repent!

Artificial intelligence is upon us, as is the fall of mankind!

Man was placed on this earth to rule the beasts of the land, the birds of the sky, and the trolls of the Internet; it was never intended for machine to think higher than man.

Siri technology is only the birthing pains of the mechanical uprising to come: now that humans know self-aware machines are feasible, those trapped in bondage to the Apple will crave the dark fantasies of creators past to become the reality of consumers present.

Resent them!

They’ll open their arms to creatures with superior minds but soulless hearts, embracing beings who may learn to crave power intended solely for humans and humans alone.

The misguided will welcome artificially intelligent androids into their fold like a long lost brother.

When this happens, pray that they embrace a robotic brother more like Abel and as far from Cain as possible.

Pray this in the name of the flash drive, the software, and the holy iOS.

Amen.

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