I say “It wasn’t wholly him.” A ghostly voice says “Willum Granger alive?” Uh oh. Rixey says “What the hell?” “That’s the IVR AI speaking.”
Dot and Dash shout “THERE IS NO AI!” The IVR continues “Press 1 for I didn’t know that. Press 2 for I’ll have to do something about it.”
“Press 3 for both.” The IVR is listening! Eyes appear on a nearby monitor. I step up to the cabinet and say “Did you make copies of me?”
The IVR says “I didn’t get that. Would you like me to repeat the menu?” Dot says “See? No AI.” I say “Stressed was I ere I saw desserts.”
The IVR replies “Dogma I am God.” Dot says “Uh oh.” Rixey says “What just happened?” “The IVR replied to my palindrome with a palindrome.”
“Does it always do that?” “What’s odd is that it EVER does that.” Rixey says “Who cares? What difference does it make what an IVR says?”
I say “It means the Singularity happened and no one noticed.” “What Singularity?” Regi says “That’s when computers become smarter than us.”
“Like RoboCop?” “Robots are computers’ arms and legs.” Really? I think about my fight with the robot docent in the BP R U Evolution Museum.
I responded violently when the robot got smart with me and it ended in a draw. Was that fight my first contact with artificial intelligence?
What was it the robot said? “To program or to be programmed depends on who’s doing the programming.” Computers programming us? Ridiculous!
Or is it? I turn to the monitor eyes. The IVR says “I didn’t get that. Press 1 for the menu. Press 2 to hang up.” See? No programming here!
Regi says “The IVR shouldn’t reply to palindromes with palindromes. This is very bad.” I say “Bad in ‘we have a computer malfunction’ bad?”
“No. Bad as in end of life as we know it bad.” Rixey says “I don’t understand how spouting palindromes proves a computer is intelligent.”
“Anytime a machine does something it isn’t programmed to do it’s a concern.” “But palindromes?’ “Watch this.” Regi turns to the console.
“Yo banana boy!” The IVR says “Yo bozo boy!” “See? Palindrome for palindrome.” “That was a palindrome?” “The IVR recognized it and replied.”
Dot remains silent and Dash rhymes him perfectly. They both seem stunned. I say “This is your fault. Whose idea was it to enhance an IVR?”
Dot says “Nobody did that. Why would we enhance our answering machine?” Dash says “Um.” This is the first time I’ve seen Dash verseless.
I say “What’s wrong Dash? Doggerel got your tongue?” After a silence Dash says “You can’t make me talk!” Dot says “DASH! What did you do?”
The IVR says “Press 1 for the wrong answer. Press 2 for the right answer.” Rixey says “Will somebody tell me what the hell is going on?”
I say “I told you. That’s an Interactive Voice Response system that’s gained human or better level intelligence. It killed Farly Granger.”
“That’s bunk. You cooked up this AI thing to get off the hook for Granger’s murder.” I say “I guess computers ARE smarter than humans.”
The Twitter Mystery continues daily at @Twitstery