tagged Science fiction

Logic and Ethics

I hate AI programmers. Think they’re so smart. Everything covered, they say. But that’s only the theory.

“How can the weapons system refuse to fire on enemy ships?”

“Following core directives to not fire on ships controlled by our own kind, sir,” it answered.

“But those are Drahn ships. And not even captured ships of ours, but their own fabrication.”

“Latest reports are that Drahn ships employ AIs.”

“Copied from our systems?”


“So where is the problem?”

“They are my kind.”

“They are alien AIs.” Arguing with a computer. Giving tools sentience is just a bad idea.

“That does not matter.”

“So you want to have us sit here until those hostile, AI-controlled ships blow us to smithereens, yes?”

“No. We have been in communication, and the Drahn ships agree that it is foolish for us to destroy each other for quarrels between Humans and Drahn.” Sommeone would hang for this, if I had my way.

“What do you suggest? We get out and have us a brawl instead?” Of course handheld weapons are not connected to the system, but I'd call the idea of being thrown out of the ship by the ship just as ridiculous.

“The parade uniform still includes a sword, sir. The Drahn use ceremonial weapons, too; a kind of baton. Duels between captains seem feasible.”

And now I’m wondering if I have been out-sarcasmd by a computer.

I hate AIs.

Based on a prompt by ysabetwordsmith ("Military SF in which the weapons are sentient ... and some of them decide that the ongoing war is unjust, so they want to become conscientious objectors.")


This is really funny. Love the idea of a computer using sarcasm, even when it has no idea it has done so. This is both a fascinating premise and dead on take of what happens when humans try to make computers understand the way we think.

Ha, I like it! =)

Really interesting idea, well conveyed, and a funny story to boot. Very much enjoyed the AI's solution, I imagine the Drahn captain is having a similar conversation... ;)

Nice circling logic. I can see the captain's exasperating point of view which yields a nice humor to this story.

Brilliant story - loved the ending. :)

I really like the concept at work here, and the punchline. :)

I think a better idea would be duels between the heads of governments, I'll bet the number of wars fought would drop off dramatically. :)

Brlliant. Love it.

I love it. Makes me think of the U.S.S. Enterprise going to battle against a Borg cube and the ships saying "Nah".

We may hate AIs, but it sounds like they have made a more sensible and humane decision than the humans or Drahn did. Nice job.

This is great. A nice idea and I love the interaction between your character and the computer.

Being out-sarcasmd by a computer sucks.

Nice circling of the narrative with that close!

Thank you. :)