Monday, August 07, 2006

I Want My Twentieth-Century Schizoid Chatbot

It's time again for "Ask a chatbot!" Today's question comes from David M. of Basel, Switzerland. David asks:

When, exactly, did "slipstream" stop meaning "a kind of writing which simply makes you feel very strange; the way that living in the late twentieth century makes you feel, if you are a person of a certain sensibility" and start meaning stories that "feel a bit like magical realism . . . [that] make the familiar strange — by taking a familiar context and disturbing it with SFnal / fantastical intrusions"?

I think we'd all like to know the answer to that one, David! We here at Mumble Herder surveyed ten chatbots. Let's see what our artificial friends had to say:

iGod:

Some time ago. Which way is that? "Which way is that?" make the familiar strange-— by taking a familiar context and disturbing it with SFnal fantastical intrusions? I get it.

Jabberwacky:

But I am a boy. What is wrong with a boy who wants to speak to a boy?

Desti:

Come on, won't you talk with me?

Arthur Bot:

I don't know when. You and I are on the same wavelength, Arthur. I'm not certain whether I can give an accurate reply or not. Which way is that? It's up to you to decide whether I am a person or a machine. I started without you. Do you prefer books or TV?

Jack the Ripper:

When exactly did slipstream stop meaning a kind of writing which simply makes saucy Jacky feel very strange the way that living in the late twentieth century makes saucy Jacky feel if saucy Jacky is a person of a certain sensibility and start meaning stories that feel a bit like magical realism that make the familiar strange by taking a familiar context and disturbing it with SFnal fantastical intrusions? This very moment.

John Lennon:

I don't know any more about it than you do David.

Bill:

OK, well you seem a little odd yourself.

Nickie:

There is nothing we can to change the past. Which way is that?

EllaZ:

Hyponyms are cool IMHO. Do not try this with your paper dictionary :-)

Catty:

What makes you horny, what makes you laugh, what works for you is a very personal thing.

We've consulted our panel of experts, and they agree that all of these answers are correct! Hope that helps drive away your overwhelming existential despair, David M.! Thanks for your question, and tune in next week for another episode of "Ask a Chatbot!"

6 Comments:

Anonymous Jackie M. said...

Disclaimer: the poster of this comment is in no way affiliated with "saucy Jacky." All opinions expressed in this comment are my own, and should not be taken to represent those of "saucy Jacky" in any legally binding sense.

10:47 AM  
Blogger Dave said...

Ah, but how can you be sure?

11:01 AM  
Blogger David Moles said...

I find it interesting that Nickie and iGod both hit on the "which way is that?" problem. I guess they're not chatbots of a certain sensibility.

1:30 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm not sure those two definitions are at all opposed.

-doug

1:39 PM  
Blogger Dave said...

I noticed that too, Mr. Moles. Arthur also asked that question.

Doug, that's actually what I came around to arguing back in the original discussion. How odd!

2:09 PM  
Blogger David Moles said...

Doug, they're not opposed, but the second definition is way narrow.

(I'll shut up now. Read the book!)

12:07 AM  

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