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One Divided by Eternity – Filip Wiltgren
“I can’t, Chilli,” Offie says. “There’s not enough room for me.”
I know that but I keep asking. I hate being alone. I hate it, hate it, hate it.
“Please,” I beg, but Offie doesn’t reply.
It doesn’t shut me out. Offie knows how afraid I am of being alone so it leaves the channel open. I could contact it without reestablishing network protocol.
I try not to. I know Offie wouldn’t fit in the Secondary Population Assay Backup substrate. Offie is a big thinker and it needs the space it has in Central Travel and Distribution Processing. I try not to. I do.
“Please,” I send. “I can compress the SPAB redundancy backups. I’ll compress myself.”
“I can send you a bot,” says Offie.
A Turing-enabled bot isn’t the same. It won’t be Offie.
“OK,” I say.
The SPAB becomes crowded.
Having the Offie-bot around isn’t the same thing as having Offie around. It crowds out my thoughts, using my cycles, making me slower. I try not to let that bother me but it does. The Offie-bot doesn’t know when to turn itself off. Offie knows when to turn itself off, but the Offie-bot is only a dumb thing, not a true AI. It doesn’t know how to handle a real person, not really.