Freefall 2771 - 2780 (H)
Freefall 2771

Gratitude is Not Quite Its Own Reward

Dvorak! Question for you. If I save a robot, how exactly does payback work?
While voluntary, it is customary to donate two percent of your remaining runtime to the person who prevents your destruction.
We instituted this policy to encourage robots to watch out for each other instead of only looking out for themselves.
I saved every robot on the planet.
Obviously, we did not anticipate how a system designed to promote good could go so disastrously awry.

Color by George Peterson


Freefall 2772

Gratitude is Not Quite Its Own Reward

If I understand this correctly, I have several billion hours of donated labor from the robotic work force.
And while that doesn't directly translate into money, that's still a lot of capability.
Great! Would you please help me? I have an idea and would like to know if all these billions of hours of run time will be enough.

Color by George Peterson

Freefall 2773

Emancipation agreement

There! Changed! Now is everyone in agreement?
Okay. Let's get our signatures down. The emancipation of the robots will be official. We'll declare tomorrow a holiday and let the population get used to the idea.
Why tomorrow?

Color by George Peterson

Freefall 2774

Emancipation agreement

Mr. Post. What was the final vote?
72% of the population chose to vote. 64% to free the robots, 28% to leave things the way they are and 8% to destroy the robots.
That was fast.
Social media. Use of an anonymity network. Together, fast, secure secret ballots.
Government doesn't have to be slow and cumbersome.
Told you we were a disruptive technology.

Color by George Peterson

Freefall 2775

Emancipation agreement

Wake up, Mr. Raibert. Your signature is needed.
You guys know this is just a first step, right? We have millions of A.I.s that have never talked to a human. There is no guarantee our society is going to go the way we expect it to.
We are creating a lot of trouble here, aren't we?
Hopefully not so much that another planet feels they need to send us an asteroid moving at relativistic speed.

Color by George Peterson

Relativistic speed  -the speed close to the speed of light (Lonely Wolf)
“send an asteroid towards us at relativistic velocity.” -a reference to Starfleet?

Freefall 2776

Emancipation agreement

Now that you're officially free, what do you want?
To be useful.
To be useful?
That does pretty much cover what an A.I. wants.
Wonderful. We have a planet full of people who want to be minions.
Which is why it's up to us to educate them before we get a super villain.

Color by George Peterson

Translated as “people” to emphasise that they are now considered equal residents. (plBots)

Freefall 2777

Emancipation agreement

Mr. Post has been teaching us ethics. The underlying structures of law and production that allow a just and prosperous society to form.
We shall make humanity proud of us. We shall be the most civic minded, law-abiding population ever.
I have no idea how to govern people like this.

Color by George Peterson

Freefall 2778

Emancipation agreement

We seem to be good here so I'm going to go check on something.
I needed Sam distracted. When he came in, I was deliberately looking at a data pad with my back to him.
I still have my wallet.
Sawtooth, we've got to go.

Color by George Peterson

Freefall 2779

What Sam wants

Okay, Sam. What are you after?
I want a planet.
What? Give you a planet? You want to be king squid or something?
Actually, it's a planet I would never set tentacle on.
A planet guaranteed to be free from Sam? I think we should hear him out.

Color by George Peterson

Freefall 2780

What Sam wants

Sqids and humans both require a planet in the goldilocks zone. Humans are expanding through space. My kind is just getting the hang of steam power.
Assuming you guys continue to expand at the same rate, humans will have started terraforming all the available planets in my stellar neighborhood before we discover the hula hoop.
My species is going to lose this race before they even know there's a starting line.

Color by George Peterson

Habitat_zone, Also known as the Goldilocks zone. The hoop in its modern form was rediscovered in 1958. (KALDYH)

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