By Curtis C. Chen
Two men in a bar.
"Why don't you like talking to Lisa?"
- "Come on, man."
- "Dude. It's not your wife. It's a computer simulation running inside a robot."
- "Wow. Is that straight out of the brochure?"
- "Are we going to have this argument, too? It's information. There isn't some magical brain energy that gets siphoned off and deposited into the newbody. You scan someone's skull for activity patterns and program the newbody's main computer to replay those patterns. Hell, that's not even a copy. That's mimicry."
- "And I should just take your word for it?"
- "Wait. You said 'problem.'"
- "What's going on?"
- "Wouldn't dream of it. Come on. Off the record."
- "Will this big secret convince me that Lisa is not a robot?"
- "Jeff. You can trust me."
Two men in a taxicab.
- "I swear. On the graves of all my forefathers, I swear. I will die before repeating any of this."
- "I'm not hearing any secrets so far."
- A pause. "What?"
- "Because you destroy the old body."
- "Wait. Wait! What do you mean, it dies? You're just making a copy of some energy patterns!"
- "Christ. If you're right, then you could kidnap someone—anyone—just by scanning them and imprinting a newbrain somewhere? Fuck, you wouldn't even need a body!"
- "I think I'm going to be sick."
- "That's fucking hilarious."