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  • Writer's picturePeter McAllister

My Top 10 AI's from film, TV and literature - Part 3

Welcome to the third part of the list – this one is a mixed up group of tech you wouldn’t want to meet in a dark alley.

Coming in at number 6 is the fully functional Data from Star Trek – Next Generation (1987-2003).

Data is a synthetic life form with artificial intelligence and human form. Data is a bit like a synthetic Spock – the outsider who in many ways is our superior: physically, intellectually and perhaps morally, but is separate from the crew because his mimicry of emotion was without an understanding of the emotion (at least he has a cat).

In at number 5 is the first of the alien AI’s, Gort, from The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951).

Gort is a member of a race of robots constructed by the interplanetary confederation, tasked with preserving peace by destroying the aggressor. Gort was autonomous, and capable of the precision vaporising weapons in the hands of soldiers without hurting them or destroying the entire planet if we proved unworthy. Its wasn’t clear, however, if he was the servant of Klaatu, the traveller who brought him to earth, or if Gort was the keeper of the zoo.

Number 4 has been on radio, TV, and in a book and the movies, Marvin the Paranoid Android from Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy (1978).

Marvin wasn’t actually paranoid – he we just very, very depressed, mostly because his last good conversation was about 40 million years ago (with a coffee machine) and was put to menial tasks such as escorting people around a spaceship, despite being 50,000 times more intelligent than a human. He was built to prototype human intelligence, so is one of the few AI’s that are in touch with human feelings - unfortunately not the positive ones.

In the final group will be a car and a couple of consols with good speaking voices...

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