Comic 1707 - The Church of the First Circuit

4th Aug 2021, 12:00 AM
The Church of the First Circuit
Average Rating: 4.94 (16 votes)
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knuut 4th Aug 2021, 12:04 AM edit delete reply
Another old positronic?
Centcomm 4th Aug 2021, 12:35 AM edit delete reply

maybe :D
MirrorField 4th Aug 2021, 1:00 AM edit delete reply
Well... Let's put it axiomatically that religion is domain of sapients. As I understand it positronic brains, while complex, are not actually sapient. Which leaves us few options:

*This is an old-model/experimental positronic brain that gained sapience due to some glitch in manufacturing or similar. Maybe highly exceptionally.

*It might be older-model "regular" android brain without normal age-limit. Fabricated before those limits were legislated and grandfathered or something.

Name "Zero" and Samanta's reaction give us vague hints that this being might have considerable history or (religious) clout. Prophet who started the church, famous monk in vein of Zenyatta/Mondatta (from Overwatch backstory) or something...
Kiddeagle 4th Aug 2021, 3:43 PM edit delete reply
positronic brains not sapient? Commander Data gonna get you. He won that case.
megados 4th Aug 2021, 7:51 PM edit delete reply

The first positronic emergence into sentience in-universe, (that I know of) is in Luna Star, predating DataChasers. She is Sebastian's (Jet) project android, introduced here.
knuut 4th Aug 2021, 7:18 PM edit delete reply
R Daneel Olivaw might also take exception.There is certainly nothing in Asimov's original conception of the 'positronic' brain that prohibits sapience and a good bit of circumstantial suggestion in his later writings that they do eventually develop it.
Deanatay 4th Aug 2021, 9:11 PM edit delete reply
Is it possible for a sparked android to choose a robotic body? Perhaps they did so as a statement, or possibly a form of penance?
mjkj 4th Aug 2021, 12:23 AM edit delete reply

Wow, finally we learn more about the church of the first circuit, nice ♡
Centcomm 4th Aug 2021, 12:35 AM edit delete reply

that we do folks!
Oldarmourer 4th Aug 2021, 1:48 AM edit delete reply
and he knows the sound of one hand clapping and who is behind the one-sided door
me 4th Aug 2021, 2:52 AM edit delete reply
In this context "Zero" should denote someone of extreme importance.
megados 4th Aug 2021, 4:59 AM edit delete reply

I think so. That designation would likely be an Elder.
megados 4th Aug 2021, 4:58 AM edit delete reply

I've been wanting to learn more about the Church; it has been mentioned many times, also Samanta's role as Chaplain, and the belief itself. I should have paid more attention in my BSL* class.

It is quite calming. @Centcomm, you did get the image out through your hands!

*Binary as a Second Language
sigpig 4th Aug 2021, 8:12 AM edit delete reply

Since "computers" start counting AT "Zero" (as in: Zero, One, Two, Three, etc), then there's a case for Zero being the "Pope" of the Church (for lack of a better word). Conversely, there could be another named "One", and they share the duties. Or, they renounce their names and take as their moniker the sacred names of either Zero or One.
Nomi 4th Aug 2021, 8:21 AM edit delete reply
Can someone remind me who Samanta is? (I wouldn't even have known the name were it not for the comments). Thanks.
Deanatay 4th Aug 2021, 8:23 PM edit delete reply
A Cassian, serves as their chaplain. Came to New Troy with Feelie and Kyle to visit the Church of The First Circuit.
Morituri 4th Aug 2021, 10:44 AM edit delete reply
My take on it is that anything (anyone) whose mind is complex enough to wonder whether they have a soul, probably does.

That is, if you believe in souls at all. It's less a positive assertion than a statement that no species has an exclusive metaphysical status that others do not.
Deanatay 6th Aug 2021, 12:04 PM edit delete reply
Depends on how you define it. If you define 'soul' as 'a self-aware mind with the capacity for behavioral growth and change' then yes, they (and I) have a soul. If you define it as 'mystical exclusionary mumbo-jumbo', then probably not.
Gilrandir 4th Aug 2021, 11:05 AM edit delete reply
Hypothetically, sentient synthbrain androids roll off the assembly lines in any desired quantities and are governed by the laws requiring a circumscribed longevity, BUT positronic sentiences have been known to emerge. We don’t know if all positronic sentiences are ‘unplanned’ or not. We also don’t know if they also have a legally circumscribed longevity. If positronic emergence is sufficiently rare, it might be that the law does not apply to them — in which case Zero might well be the founder of the Church of the First Circuit. It might not just be his name, but also his membership number. ^_^
megados 4th Aug 2021, 3:06 PM edit delete reply

There are a couple of things you point out that raise even more questions. We know of the prescribed longevity cap as it exists in New Troy, and we can surmise that it isn't an embedded function of the synth brain, because of the sequence that Disaster Juice did about the runaway android that crashed in the wastes, and the girl Nayelli (sp?) took care of. I didn't look it up. It's either left up to the honor system, or barring that, apprehension. We don't really know if a longevity cap is practiced or enforced in all areas.

After the first positronic emergence, I wonder if they looked at it and said "Oh, hey! Look at this; let's do it again!", and thus began some kind of research into positronic sentience, with possibly varying degrees of success, leading to early synth brain research.

Regardless, the underlying question remains unanswered: "Did they, or did they not make the longevity cap retroactive when they implemented it. Whether it came into being before or after the development of synth brains may end up being irrelevant. The only thing, I surmise, that would make it relevant, is whether both positronic brains and synth brains exhibit similar degradation over time, since that was the reason given for the implementation of the longevity cap.

I think it's a good assumption, that if Zero isn't a founder, he's at least a well respected Elder.
Gilrandir 4th Aug 2021, 6:17 PM edit delete reply
@Megados -- "The only thing, I surmise, that would make it relevant, is whether both positronic brains and synth brains exhibit similar degradation over time, since that was the reason given for the implementation of the longevity cap."

Where did you get this from? I don't recall any canon source for this, and it does not seem rational. Since personalities can easily migrate from one synthbrain to another, hardware longevity would seem to be irrelevant as justification for a longevity cap. The restriction, as I recall, is on personality longevity. I don't think we've ever had a justification for it offered, but the impression I get is that the purpose of the longevity cap is to keep humans from becoming even more obsolete as androids both outreproduce them and outlive them.
megados 4th Aug 2021, 6:39 PM edit delete reply

It was in a comments section discussion. To be honest, I'm somewhat at a loss exactly where, but I do remember Sheela (speaking of, Sheela has been conspicuously absent of late), was also in on the discussion. It was specifically about the longevity cap. The reason was that degradation brought about some sort of dementia. I do not remember whether Tokyo Rose or Centcomm was involved in the discussion. The reason I remembered it at all, was that I was asserting that very premise, and that there should be no reason for any degradation at all, since even today, software has an ability, to a certain extent, to be self-repairing. In the event of hardware deficiencies, they can be detected by software and circumvented, even today. I was kind of argued down, so I took it for what it was.

So, it's admittedly flimsy as I can't really tell you exactly where it was, but maybe either someone else also remembers it, or it's possible I am misremembering something.
Gilrandir 4th Aug 2021, 9:12 PM edit delete reply
Interesting. If some variation of the Xerox Effect is the reason for the longevity cap there are all sorts of plausible explanations for it. I wonder if we will eventually see a more adult Lynn forced to deal with Dolly confronting the android equivalent of Alzheimer’s. That would certainly be tragic.

But it does leave room for the longevity cap to apply to synthbrains only, or for there to be a different span allocated to positronics, based on differing performance over time. Perhaps they are still waiting for Zero to exhibit the first signs of synth-dementia? Or maybe Zero, seeing a hottie like Samanta, will have a mid-life crisis, go out and buy a sporty red hovercar, and go out to recapture his lost youth? ^_^
Gilrandir 4th Aug 2021, 9:17 PM edit delete reply
This also suggests that A.I.S. technology is positronic in nature — and only given its vastly greater computing power by virtue of having city-sized brains — rather than neurosynthetic. Because CentComm is much older than 100 years but seemingly is exhibiting no signs of dementia.
megados 5th Aug 2021, 5:01 AM edit delete reply

"I wonder if we will eventually see a more adult Lynn forced to deal with Dolly confronting the android equivalent of Alzheimer’s. That would certainly be tragic."

Yes, it would be, and it's been something bothering me as well. Would it play out that way, or would Dolly be granted some special dispensation/care/treatment/measures/sporty red hovercar not available to any but the New Troy Elite?
Deanatay 6th Aug 2021, 10:11 PM edit delete reply
megados: You could make the argument that her new body was created specifically to circumvent this law, and draw the law's very existence into question.
megados 7th Aug 2021, 6:25 AM edit delete reply

You could, but the body isn't really the person. AFAIK, the synth brain and the persona are what the law is centered on. If not for that, any android could simply get a new body every so often, and skirt the law indefinitely.
Ictuan 9th Aug 2021, 9:05 PM edit delete reply
Given the rate of time passage in the story line vs real world, I think it is safe to say it is highly unlikely the story will progress to a point where Dolly is ever at risk of confronting her old age. We'll be lucky if Kyle and Lynn have enough passage of time to contemplate getting married. I don't think much more than six months has passed since the story began.
megados 5th Aug 2021, 10:58 AM edit delete reply

Interesting hypothesis. Does the hardware have to be positronic to gain sentience, since volume is not a constraint, or could it be a city's worth of [conventional] electronics? Do the positronics impart special attributes, or just save space? Both?
Oldarmourer 6th Aug 2021, 8:05 PM edit delete reply
As far as I know, CENTCOMM is a huge computer complex which became sentient, her 'dolls' are exactly that, non-sentient machine she 'possesses' from time to time when she need mobility or something for people to talk to (or shoot) ;)
megados 7th Aug 2021, 6:21 AM edit delete reply

Basically, yes. CentComm has a number of dolls, (more or less drones) whose purpose is to interact with the humans. It's a psychologically sound premise to make the humans more at ease. Even shooting them has the effect of allowing the person to vent frustration. She knows it's best just to let them, and maybe charge them for damages later. Dolls are easily replaceable. CentComm could very well send an army of armed dolls in response, but that would be counter-productive. Doing that would cause the person, and possibly the populace at large, to begin to think that CentComm was becoming less of a protector, and more of a dictator/oppressor.
DLKmusic 4th Aug 2021, 4:36 PM edit delete reply

If he is the founder, that would make the line "The path is as long as it needs to be" significantly more profound...
megados 5th Aug 2021, 5:42 AM edit delete reply

Very true.
Thamstras 4th Aug 2021, 12:26 PM edit delete reply
Glad to see ASCII still clings on in the future!
Kiddeagle 4th Aug 2021, 4:47 PM edit delete reply
"As in the thronged and the ways, so dark desert they stand, wary and watchful all their days that their brethren's days may long in the land."

Interesting and nice. (although you misplaced the space between the 70th and 71st character)
KarToon12 4th Aug 2021, 5:52 PM edit delete reply

Their name is Zero because they have zero clothes or skin. XD

I'm also curious to know what that spells out in binary. Translation anyone?
Gilrandir 4th Aug 2021, 6:21 PM edit delete reply
Sixth Quatrain, lines three and four. The Sons of Martha
jawbone 4th Aug 2021, 8:09 PM edit delete reply

There is a shop near me titled "Martha and Brothers", in the hands of a Palestinian Christian family, but there not, to my understanding, any droids or synthbrains there.
stormryder 4th Aug 2021, 11:21 PM edit delete reply
Shades of Caprica coming soon???
Mac 5th Aug 2021, 5:22 PM edit delete reply

As in Caterpillar?

Just noticed it on Zero's upper pectoral.
Oldarmourer 6th Aug 2021, 8:06 PM edit delete reply
Shouldn't he be painted yellow then ?
Guest 7th Aug 2021, 1:09 PM edit delete reply
It looks like that it is painted yellow, it's just heavily chipped, peeled and faded from years of hard service. Maybe a construction robot that somehow sparked on its own? Or it is a retired con bot that someone picked up and played with the programing and hardware till it sparked.
plymayer 6th Aug 2021, 5:22 PM edit delete reply

A never ending sea of on and offs. Binary is the start ...
Gilrandir 7th Aug 2021, 10:31 PM edit delete reply
Is anyone other than me having trouble with the ‘recent page’ pulldown menu? I can select a page with it, but the page does not then load. (The small pulldown window between the navigation buttons)
megados 8th Aug 2021, 5:12 AM edit delete reply

It's working now . . . Some time has passed since you posted though.
Gilrandir 8th Aug 2021, 9:26 AM edit delete reply
Still not working for me, but it is good to know that it is working for others.
megados 8th Aug 2021, 12:22 PM edit delete reply

It would be even better if it works for you too! I don't know what you're using, but if it's a PC, try dropping down the menu, and right click a selection, and see if it gives you options. If it's a mobile device, drop the menu down, then tap and hold a selection, again looking for options.
Gilrandir 8th Aug 2021, 8:38 PM edit delete reply
Well, on the PC, the pulldown is now working. On the mobile it does not yet work, and tapping provides no additional options.
megados 9th Aug 2021, 4:55 AM edit delete reply

Odd, that. I have to assume you tried the "close all apps and power down" thing?
Gilrandir 9th Aug 2021, 10:44 AM edit delete reply
I have.
megados 9th Aug 2021, 11:53 AM edit delete reply

Tap and hold doesn't bring up options for me either; I mistakenly thought it would bring up an options menu. What it does do, though, is grey-highlight the selection, until I release it, then it goes to the selected page. If I just tap it, it goes immediately. It's an interesting, if annoying problem.

*edit: Possibly clear the cache? There might be a bunged up version of the page in cache.
sigpig 11th Aug 2021, 10:28 AM edit delete reply

Cache and cookies.
Could be an anti-malware/firewall/VPN issue too, if @Gilrandir uses one.
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