Monday, August 15, 2022

The Advancement of Mateo Matic: June 12, 2398

Angela rolls out of bed at 7:59, and right into the chair. She wheels over to the desk, and switches on her computer. She’s logged on by 8:01, making her technically on time, which she can prove with the little green dot next to her name that shows her status as available. She rolls her eyes when her co-worker sends the first message immediately. It’s a little flirty, but she’s centuries old, so she knows what real flirting looks like. He’s just pretending to be interested, when really he’s trying to micromanage her. The other guys around the office are just trying to get into Marie’s pants, but he couldn’t care less. He likes to know when people are screwing around, so he can get them in trouble. Instead of trying to excel at his own job, he figures the best way to win is to just get rid of everyone else. Unfortunately for him, Angela has a secret weapon. She removes the memstick from its case, and unleashes it on the machine.
There are two sides to Marie’s job. One is the major jobs, which often involve writing entirely new programs for clients. The others are smaller scripts, which link to preexisting programs, and automate various tasks. She uses a workflow application, where clients send her these small jobs that ask her to simplify their jobs. For instance, a data entrist has been tasked with cross-referencing datestamps on a social log with fluctuations in consumer behavior. That is, he’s the first step in a team that’s looking for possible causes between what people are talking about online, and what people are buying in the stores. The synthesis of this data may require higher-level thinking, which nascent AI cannot yet fathom, but the cross-referencing itself is really just about brute force. The requestor is hoping for an easier way to input this data, and adjust it to account for the time lag between social media posting, and real world purchases. It’s now Angela’s responsibility to make those two programs talk to each other, and dump all relevant information into a well-made report. At least, that’s what her alternate would do. Angela has it even easier, because she has also outsourced her work.
When the team was down in The Constant, looking for any information they could find on what happened to The Concierge, Ramses found something. He discovered the source code for the artificial intelligence inside the system that was programmed to serve guest needs. Other AIs were in charge of controlling lights and life support, and whatnot, but this particular one had to be smart enough to understand personal requests, and seek solutions. If somebody asked for a fried egg with a square yolk, the kitchen devices could handle it, but only if an intelligence explained it to them. This AI is complex and adaptable, which is vital to any situation it might have never encountered before. That’s what makes it perfect to do Angela’s job for her. It’s the thing that she plugged into the external memory port. The AI will read the workflow manager on her behalf, understand the script requests, and write the code itself. All Angela has to do is test it out, and her work is done. Even though this greatly increases her productivity, she’s intentionally making it a slow process, because no one can know that it’s happening. Only Ramses knows the truth; they didn’t even tell Marie that Angela has been using it since training ended. She would probably not approve of the risk.
Now that the AI is running, she gets back in bed. But then another message dings. It’s that guy again, claiming that the bosses would like to speak with her immediately. She growls, puts on some pants, and practices her smile. Then she activates her camera.

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