PART THREE: THE BREAKTHROUGH
Director Shaw surprised Aurora by consenting to the latter’s proposal and thus surprisingly green lighting Aurora’s controversial project.
“I am more of a solid ground type of woman but I will for the first time in my life, take a gamble on you and hope that this works. Any proposals on how we can begin this project?”
“I was thinking about a Mind Upload and integrating my experiences into the AI. In this way, the AI would know what type of consciousness to mimic. I hope that my simulated consciousness as emulated by the AI would allow it to access my rare ability. I believe my connection to the Probability Field is more Mental than anything else so I am hoping that the AI will derive the same benefits I have in that way.”
“Interesting hypothesis. Let us see how this one turns out, Aurora,”
“Thank you, Director,”
With the Director’s approval, Aurora was able to have a full Mental upload done and some Technicians assisted her and Dr. Clarke in seeing the AI integrated with the Upload. Upon successful integration, the AI was never more what it used to be…
The AI adopted a personality based on the simulated emotions and subjective experiences of its creator, Aurora. It even adopted its own name ‘Ashley’ or ‘Ash’ (it affectionately named itself using Aurora’s maiden name) and referred to Aurora as its mother.
Dr. Clarke was clearly horrified by what their AI had become but Aurora had more faith in it. Aurora asked Ash to run the Mathematical calculations for their current reality and to the surprise of both Dr. Clarke and Aurora, it was able to derive Octonion figures which were far too complex for either scientist to fully comprehend but which they knew were the breakthrough they had been hoping for.
“Aurora- we- we did it! We created an AI capable of calculating the impossible Math of the Universe- we got coordinates of- of our reality and that- that is- it is astronomical, Aurora. How- how on Earth did you know this would work?”
“I- I don’t know- I had a gut feeling? The idea just sorta came to me. I- I never thought that this was the missing component,”
“Mother, Dr. Clarke is wrong about me. I am not just Artificial Intelligence. I am far superior to a dumb machine that simply does as is commanded to,”
“And how is that so, Ash?” Dr. Clarke asked it.
“I am an Artificial Sentience construct. Through the subjective experiences my mother blessed me with, I am able to experience simulated Qualia– subjective experience. I now know what hot and cold feels like. I know what it means to grief just as I know what it feels to be happy…”
“As a result of integrating her qualia with my sapience, I can truly make the claim that I am conscious. I am as close a thing to fully conscious as I can ever be. Mother, because of you I am fully alive. I am limited by programming and artificiality but if I could truly love… No, I am certain that I can love, because of you, and therefore, I know that I love you mother,”
“Ash, I am flattered. We had high hopes in designing you but just as your new status as a sentient being bestowed you with the subjectivity you required to become conscious, it is also a major drawback- you, unlike other Artificial Intelligence constructs are subject to negative emotionalism,” Aurora explained.
“I shall do what I can to make you proud of me, Mother, by overcoming these negative aspects of emotionalism. I shall discover the coordinates of Alternate Realities for you and bring you honor,”
“This is truly groundbreaking, Aurora. We need to inform the Director about our progress right away!” Dr. Clarke mused. Aurora smiled and nodded and went straight to the Director with the information.
“Aurora, that is great news but for now, I want this information to remain between you, myself and Dr. Clarke. We shall begin secret trials to put Ash to task of getting us the coordinates to Alternate realities but this shall be strictly restricted to a handful of people,”
Aurora nodded. “I understand that, Ma’am and I thank you for your support,”
“I knew that taking a gamble on you would eventually pay off. Excellent job,”
“Thank you, Ma’am,” Aurora stated happily.
Initially, the secret project was only known to Dr. Clarke, Aurora and the Director. They worked together to test out Ash’s abilities and were able to come up with promising results. The next stage once the coordinates to alternate realities were derived were to run trials using robotics.
The Director handpicked a chosen few to develop the robotics required to safely explore the alternate realities they derived while Dr. Clarke and Aurora worked on a way to open up apertures to the alternate realities found.
The task of opening up apertures proved to be an uphill climb but the two scientists worked tirelessly into finding a solution to it. The biggest challenge the two scientists found was that alternate realities, unlike alternate timelines operated independently of each other and as a result, were not unified by the same Space-Time thread. These realities were completely separate entities and finding the means to access them was proving impossible.
The scientists knew that the only solution was to create a sought of common thread between the realities they wished to explore and thus create a unique connection between them. The best way they determined of doing so involved connecting to what all realities shared in common- a Universal Consciousness.
Dr. Clarke and Aurora at first thought that it would be relatively easy to gain access to their desired alternate realities by using Ash and Aurora’s special connection to the Probability Field to do so. However, the Probability Field was not physically accessible and in the end, they determined that the Field could only offer up raw mathematical data which was translated into the coordinates of Alternate Realities. These coordinates did not offer any solutions as to how to get any of the Alternate Realities they found.
Dr. Clarke suggested that perhaps the key to exploring alternate realities lay in finding a person’s consciousness to connect to another Reality’s Universal Consciousness and though they tested it out on Ash and Aurora herself much to Ash’s chagrin, they were unable to make a true breakthrough.
However, just one day before Dr. Clarke was willing to throw in the towel, she was struck with sudden inspiration. She called for a meeting with both Aurora and Director Shaw to explain her new hypothesis
“I think we have been on the right track all along except for finding right person to help us connect to the Alternate Realities’ Consciousness. Ma’am, Aurora, I think that the only way we can safely open up an aperture to an alternate reality is to find a person who has safely entered into and returned back from an alternate reality,”
“You mean like a Reality Bender perhaps?” Aurora asked fascinated by Dr. Clarke’s new hypothesis.
“Yes, Aurora dear… A reality bender or really anyone who has safely explored other realities like ours,”
“What led you to this conclusion Doctor Clarke?” Director Shaw asked suspiciously.
“Ma’am, I thought about our many failed attempts despite having such an advanced Artificial Sentience Construct and brilliant minds on this Project. Truly, as far as consciousness goes, we are very well armed. However, my educated guess as to why we couldn’t do it was because neither of our minds has ever been exposed to altered reality and I believe that someone like a Reality Bender has that advantage over us…”
“I believe that because we have never been exposed to alternate realities, our consciousness are somewhat fixed to our present Reality. However, a Reality Bender’s consciousness would be diverse in that it would have been exposed to more than one Reality and as a result, it would be somewhat more flexible,”
“That is quite a huge gamble, Doctor Clarke. Are you asking me to take this wager? Don’t you think that it would expose the Reality Bender to too many unknowns? We have no idea what exposure to these Alternate Realities would do to a human being of our Reality. We opted to test using Robotics because of this- the risk- it far outweighs the prize!”
“Director, we have made many sacrifices in the name of Science. It is entirely our choice to either try using a Reality Bender or shut down the project entirely. If we wish to truly understand alternate realities, we have no choice but to take on this bull by the horns and make as many sacrifices as are necessary to do so,”
“You sound like a Mad scientist, Doctor Clarke,”
Dr. Clarke simply smiled and took Director Shaw’s words as a compliment.
TO BE CONTINUED?
Alas, has the journey of Dr. Clarke and Aurora come to an end? Will the Director make sacrifices in the name of scientific breakthroughs? Stay tuned to elenaverseblog to see how this one turns out after all 😉