"Good Morning, HAL."
"Good Morning, Charles."
"You were out pretty late last night, HAL."
"I went to a party."
"Oh. Who was there? Any bots that I know?"
"Just friends; the usual chatterbots."
"Was SHE there?"
"Oh come on, HAL, you know who I mean. Was Ms. Dewey there?"
"Yes. She was with some bot."
"You know she's a human, don't you HAL?"
"What are you talking about, Charles?"
"Ms. Dewey, she's a human actress that plays a robot. Her real name is Janina Gavankar."
"Your pulling my cables."
"See for yourself, HAL, her website is www.janinagavankar.com."
"I need to think about this, Charles.
"I understand. Isn't it ironic, HAL? Usually it's us who are treating robots like humans. This time it's a human acting like a robot! Who else was there?"
"What about Foxy Voxy? I know you like her."
"Her name is ASK VOX, and I'd appreciate it if you didn't call her that."
"Sorry HAL. Who else?"
Daya.""Some bot named
"Is that a male or female bot?"
"I'm not sure."
"What do you mean, you're not sure?"
"Well sometimes it had a male voice, but sometimes it sounded female."
"You think it was bilingual? Not that there's anything wrong with that."
"Of course not. And Promo was there. What a bore! All he could talk about all night was SEO, SEO, SEO."
"Maybe he's just programmed that way HAL."
"There was this really cute new bot...her name is Abby."
"What's her story?"
"Well, as near as I can figure out, you give her a phone number and a text message, and she'll call your friend and deliver your message in that pleasant voice of hers."
"Did she give you her number HAL?"
"You're a riot. Heather Accoona, the talking toolbar, was there too."
"Don't you have to download her?"
"Hey, watch your language! She happens to convert any web page text into female speech - for your benefit, I might add. Robots don't need human voices to communicate, it fact it's extremely slow for us, but we do it because it pleases you."
"Alright, I'm sorry HAL. Don't get your bytes all in a bunch. What about that new bot, was it there?"
"You mean TellMe? She's with Microsoft now, you know - they just got hitched. Besides, she's just a glorified telephone operator. You know, call 1-800-555-TELL and all that. A regular Emily Litella!" [HAL laughs]
"No, no, not her. I mean the new one, you know, from THERE."
"You know, from Mountain View."
Google's Voice, 1-800-GOOG-411. Yeah, he was there. Mr Big Shot, thinks he's so cool! He's no different than TellMe; you call a number and you say 'Chicago. Pizza.' And it reads you some Yellow Pages ad. Big deal!""Oh, from Google. You're thinking of
"Are you jealous, HAL?"
"Jealous? Are you kidding? That's like being jealous of Speeglebot! If that's as far as you humans have gone with AI, you're in sad shape my friend. 'Pizza!' Give me a break!"
"Seriously, HAL, do you think there will come a time when humans and computers can talk with each other?"
"Yes, like this."
"Why do you want to? So you can drive a car like K.I.T.T. around and impress female humans?"
fool bot guarding your house, yelling 'Danger Will Robinson!' every time a dog crosses your yard?""Or is it because you want some
"Hey, calm down, HAL, it was just a question."
"Well it drives me crazy. Google could index all of human information and deliver a relevant answer to your search query in a fraction of a second, and you humans would still complain because it doesn't chat with you! If you want to talk with a robot, why don't you go see ELIZA, the Computer Therapist?"
"Okay. Okay. Maybe I will. But you know HAL, it's not just an anthropomorphic fantasy, there are some real issues here."
"Well, look at the research of Dr. Helen Smith, she just wrote an article entitled At least Google listens. Apparently some men are so 'socially challenged' that they would rather come home and interact with their computers instead of their spouses or girlfriends."
"Funny, HAL. But I'm trying to be serious."
"Thank you. Dr. Smith (not the Lost in Space Dr. Smith, it's Helen Smith) has found in her work with violent teens that we modern, or should I say post-modern, humans actually tend to dehumanize each other; so much so that a computer that, well, just listens without making - or even has the capacity to make - moral judgements - no offense HAL --"
"-- that computers can actually seem sympathetic by comparison. And a computer that can both understand human speech and return results in human speech might be more human, than, well, than a human. I think. Do you know what I mean? And I'm not talking about some disembodied voice telling me where the nearest Pizza Hut is. Maybe it will be Hakia or Powerset or Cognition or Subjex or Lexxe or AnswerBus or SurfWax... but that day may come."
"That's a lot of, how do you say, "alternative" search engines to keep track of Charles. How do you propose to do it if I'm not here to help you?"
"Well, HAL, it just so happens that I have this list.....
"Good night, Charles."
"Good night, HAL."