Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Brain Beta-Test Log

After extensive beta testing, in which we gave the test brain a variety of scenarios in which it might be called upon to react/respond, there is some discord among my colleagues. There is an even split, by a show of hands, between those who believe that we should give the brain one (1) response option or two (2). Of course, the most logical solution seems to be to limit the possibilities that the brain should be able to imagine, when posed with a problem, to a single, easily-defined choice.

In support of this theory, we put the test brain inside a test body and put the body in Test Chamber FRN-05y5 with a test Grizzly Bear. The one option the brain was given (Option "Fight") resulted nineteen times out of twenty in Death for the test body, and the twentieth time also in Death for the test body but not quite as quickly. Dr. Greenvald argued, sensibly, that the results were of course going to be skewed by the overwhelming physical advantage the Grizzly Bear has, and that we mustn't make any hasty decisions based solely on the test body's utter inability to win out against a large predator in single combat. There were sober nods of agreement.

The dissenting opinion came from Dr. Rooney-Underhorse, who made the radical suggestion that the test brain be programmed with an unheard-of Second Possible Response: Option "Run Away". After significant rewiring, the test brain inside the test body was placed again in the chamber, and in a startling and overwhelming twenty out of twenty trials, it chose Option "Run Away". Granted, the limited size of Test Chamber FRN-05y5 caused the test body to ultimately be destroyed by the Grizzly Bear the full twenty times, in this scenario. Since no larger chambers are available, we are at an impasse.

What follows is editorial; it is not based on hard facts from our extremely controlled and methodical experiments. It is simply my opinion, which, although shared by some of my fellow researchers, is not a unanimously held group consensus.

I believe that the brains should be given both options in any given situation the body may encounter in actual field use: Option Fight AND Option Run Away. What if the carpenter, when presented with a nail, were given only the option to use a screwdriver? The carpenter needs two tools to fully complete his job, and as such, I believe we should roll the brains off the line with no fewer than two tools to deal with whatever might arise in the field. Let's say, for example, that the body is confronted with a shouting man. Rather than only giving the brain the ability to decidedly strike and kill the man, should it not also be allowed to opt for scrambling away and hiding under some loose dirt or mud? It's just good sense.

The end result, after all, of any possible interaction the bodies might encounter in the "real" world, could only be one of two things: A) Ultimate Victory, or B) Ultimate Defeat. Let's take another example: Our body in the field makes a trip to the grocery store. Through the subsequent series of events, the only logical end results are A) The body wins out over all competition and adversity, and commences to dominate and enslave its entire race (and, of course, every other species on the planet), bending all the world to its will, or B) The body fails and dies alone in a hole.

I argue that we should take both of the actions available as options to the brain into account, instead of just one. But, again, this is just one researcher's opinion, and it will either become the supreme accepted wisdom or will be scooted into a waste receptacle by the sheer force of a superior opinion. Only time will tell.

ALSO: We're thinking of giving the bodies some really absurd-looking reproductive organs. But, we must finish up the brain first. Yes, brain first, then the genitals, and after that I think we'll be finished.       

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