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robert szot
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robot wisdom

thomas' blog
Yes, how to live is a topugh one

Can machines think? Depends on what you mean by think.

But, no, not really.

I guess I’m still surprised/interested in how badly the AI/Wired/technophile crowd wants this to be a real possibility. It’s as if once we determine there’s nothing fundamentally unique about being human, we’ll be able to turn to...what exactly?

- 2/26/2006 10:11:07 PM | link

Deepth Doughts

#5: One thing kids like is to be tricked. For instance, I was going to take my little nephew to Disneyland, but instead I drove him to an old burned-out warehouse. "Oh, no," I said. "Disneyland burned down." He cried and cried, but I think that deep down, he thought it was a pretty good joke. I started to drive over to the real Disneyland, but it was getting pretty late.

More, so many more.

- 2/22/2006 9:51:00 PM | link

More pet peeves

Yes, this is going to be one of those whiny bitch-fests, so skip it if itís going to lead you to leave some "Man, youíre negative" comments b/c I have my wife to tell me Iím really negative and I love her. I donít love you.

Tolerate. I tolerate you.

- When you go to a restaurant and the waiter/waitress asks you "Have you ever been to [fill in restaurant name] before?" Like they have some special way of preparing/serving food that is so beyond the pale of anything youíve ever experienced that they have to explain it to you in a series of hyperbolic and yet mundane announcements. Like theyíve revolutionzied eating to the point that youíre going to be spinning around in your chair upside down while midgets come out and cook your food with their feet. Except they havenít. Theyíre just going to explain the level of spiciness in their sauces.

- Any and all emails I receive from the monolith known as Texas State. I swear to God, the MFA emails are the most worthless piece of shit emails I get in my whole day and I get like twelve of them. About half of them announce some worthless poetry prize. The other half announce a worthless fiction prize. If I wanted to PAY TO HAVE MY GODDAMN WRITING JUDGED, Iíd hire an editor. Oh wait, Iím already paying. Yeah, I could really use a chapbook or a subscription to PISS ON FIRE literary journal. Thanks. Could we maybe combine all these emails into one email? Have it say something like "Random Shit That People Have Sent Me Today."

- That guy from Lost. You know the one.

- When somebody comes by my cube and asks me if Iíve seen somebody who doesnít sit right next to me and isnít in my clear line of view since, well, I have a cube and I donít have a camera installed in everyoneís cube, monitoring their comings and goings. But, if you want to cough up some money, we could have that arranged.

- The notes we get from the boys’ school. Combined with the MFA emails, these work to undo whatever shred of sanity I still have by the time I get home. Iím going to offer this up as advice to teachers everywhere who think that sending home a pink piece of paper with a picture of a bear and an announcment like "Pictures coming up. $15." makes any sense whatsoever. When? Do you need a check? Made payable to who? Start off with the basics. In fact, have a little template that you work up in Mac Word. It could go something like this:



HOW MUCH MONEY WEíRE BILKING YOU FOR THIS TIME (combined with a running total of how much money youíve asked for over the course of the school year):


Also, try to get it to me, oh, letís say more than one day before the whatever-the-crap is going to happen.

- The Ranger Soccer fields. Is that not positioned in the worst possible place in the whole world? I mean, Iím being totally serious. That is the Bermuda triangle of Austin. Itís impossible to find and when you do finally get there, you canít get out.

- The Soup Peddler. Who is this creepy guy? I really want to buy soup from some proto-hippie who rides around on his bike leaving a trail of patchouli stink. No, no. I kid. I love the Soup Peddler. He’s hip! He’s capitalist! He’s sustainable! Pretty soon there will be thousands of soup peddlers all over town, waiting on their bikes in your front yard, making you feel better about yourself, food and Austin. There will be Soup Peddler franchises in places like Amarillo and Galveston. All you need is a bike and these strange, delicioso recipes. We’ll do for soup what Starbucks did for coffee. $15 for a cup of soup! And we pay the third world farmers double for the gaspacho beans! I’m going to order some
Sichuan Carrot Soup for tomorrow.