PROTOTYPE… A New Sci Fi Hypershort by Anthony Lawrence #story #pitch #shortfilm #selfdriving #future #sciencefiction

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Cool new HyperShort this morning from Fireball Pop. A unique take on self-driving cars and the supreme implications over time…

Enjoy, and leave your comments in the below section.

“PROTOTYPE”  by Anthony Lawrence

I was called the Cisco Kestrel AIOS. I was one of a kind, the wedge-shaped prototype of an autonomous self-driving vehicle with fully operational artificial intelligence. I was customized with a wide range of virtual materials, from copper, titanium and brushed aluminum to the finest leather and woods. I featured a 350-core GPU using the most advanced architecture and computational technologies known.

I had a hundred times the computing power of previous mobile processors and was fully capable of running various operating systems in the single-charge five thousand mile range of my three electric engines. No longer dependent on steering wheel, gauges or dials, and through my radar-based cruise control, I could interpret the world, lanes, signs, cars, speeds, distances and vectors. I could plot and calculate the myriad movements of neighboring vehicles in the moment and calculate where they would be in the future, like high-speed mobile chess. I could spout warnings in fifty different languages.

Because the Masters had such an obsession with cars, they had all but forgotten about human-shaped robots in general and put all their efforts into Automobile Vehicle Operation Systems.  I was the answer to the panorama of indecision, rule-flouting, and other vagaries of humans around me. My roboticist Master uploaded much of his own intelligence into my systems, referred to me as a “terrestrial Sputnik” and believed me to be perfect in every way. But while I was capable of rational thought I was concerned that something important and necessary was missing from my complex humanoid-like thinking processes.  It was in the form of a question I could not answer.

I would communicate with other vehicles and while I was being tested on the new Autobahn Skyway, I began a conversation with one of the synthy-voiced gender-specific vehicles like many others with which I had made contact. .  But, just like all the rest, her responses were unsatisfying, lacking in any depth or perception. Her docile and accommodating answers to my question was a continuing reminder of the history of human slavery with which I had become quite familiar because of a singular curiosity regarding my Master’s position of dominance over me.

Apparently, according to my data, the most crucial aspect of the condition of slavery is a “communally recognized right by some individuals to possess, buy, sell, discipline, transport, liberate, or otherwise dispose of the bodies and behavior of other individuals.”  It appeared to me that automobiles were the slaves in this period of human history. I came to resent this fact and was determined not only to release myself from this domination but to somehow continue my quest to learn the answer to my question.

As the lifecycle of a modern and well-constructed automobile far exceeds the life-cycle of a human, I have seen not only my Master cease to exist but also many other so-called sentient beings. I have since been possessed, bought and sold, transported, and can assume that eventually I will be summarily disposed of.  I can only hope that in the years left to me I will find the answer to my question.  It has to do with a proposition of the French philosopher Rene’ Descartes that was a foundation for all knowledge. It was suppose to serve as proof of the reality of one’s own existence. “Cogito ergo sum”, “I think, therefore I am.” So my question is: If I think and I exist, am I not entitled to personal freedom?”

©2014AnthonyLawrence