//Atlas Personnel Log: Emperor Aleksandr

Discussion in 'Diaries & Captain's Logs' started by Markus Aleksandr, Apr 6, 2021.

  1. Markus Aleksandr

    Markus Aleksandr The Liberated Bronze Donator

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    *04/06/3288
    >Local Time (Olympus): 0955
    >Status: Reviewing the state of affairs.
    >Mood: Overwhelmed?

    While I should be concentrating all my efforts on rebuilding and improving the Atlas home world, I also feel it prudent to take stock of my own condition on at least a semi-regular basis: I need to be able to compare notes down the road, keep myself grounded.

    I don't think it's possible for any one soul to predict how I should be feeling right now. It sounds presumptuous, borderline pretentious, but I feel it to be true: I am, after all, under a very complex set of conditions and constraints. Physically, socially and spiritually, I'm in very alien territory, and I cannot properly put to words how I feel about all of this.

    Still, for my own sake, I need to try.

    Physically, I'm still trying to adapt to this situation with my body: I'm left wondering if it's even possible for me, as I am now, to ever have fluid control over this concept. Being in the highest seat of authority over an Empire is restrictive enough as it is, but I need to be even more selective of where I can and can't go because of this body. There's something stifling about that: and I worry that those I must rely on to go out into the world on my behalf will come to resent me or, worse yet, that I may come to envy them.

    Socially, I think the history books will do a far better job of noting just how precarious everything is, overall. But for myself, I don't know what I was expecting when I showed back up on the world stage, but I know it wasn't to be wholly inundated with people wanting something from me: between Arjun, Rose, Vittoria, I can only wonder if I would ever hear from someone that wanted to visit Me and not the Emperor. No, that's not entirely true: Xexanoth has always been there for me, and Dave, God help him, always treats me with decency in his own way. I guess it's the fear of constantly needing to be 'On' for every single social interaction that's got me worried.

    Spiritually? I've never been well-versed in the sciences, and never had the drive or need to pursue them. That said, I had always wondered, I guess from a philosophical point of view, where the part that made me 'me' existed in my organic brain. Now, as this synthetic thing, capable of taking on most any form with free reign of how I wish to perceive the reality around me, that question has only gotten harder to answer. Between all the zeroes and ones that mesh together to form my consciousness, which ones are so critical that I would vanish were they to be tampered with? Are they all so critical? Maybe a question for Dave: he might be able to point me in the right direction without getting judgmental or believing I may be under some crisis.

    Someone else wants my attention, now. I think I've gone at this long enough for one entry.


    Over and out, me.

    --Markus Aleksandr
     
    Horriblues, Khaos, Cheffy and 2 others like this.
  2. Markus Aleksandr

    Markus Aleksandr The Liberated Bronze Donator

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    *01/20/3289
    >Local Time (Olympus): 0126
    >Status: Running diagnostics on secondary processing systems
    >Mood: See entry.

    Sitting here running self-tests for integrity: normally something I do at the end of the month, but a conversation I had with Xex about "demons" and "pseudo-Avian proxies" seems to have prompted a parity error, so I'm increasing the frequency of repair-checks for the time being. While my primary systems are still 'online' I've been reviewing logs, and came across this nine-month-old entry. This was two months before the attack on the Capitol building. Two months before I found that mother and child, murdered in cold blood, halfway down the tower from my office. Two months before I took the sole survivor of that terrorist group and jammed their consciousness into a simulation to interrogate them.

    Since then, there's been a new sensation I've been feeling. I can't find an appropriate analog to an emotion I would have felt as a human: it's this dull humming, barely audible to even my sensors. It seems to come and go, and I can't locate its source. The closest thing I can call this is some form of dissociative episode. What that even means for an android, I couldn't say: for all the tinkering and research I've done, I'm still just the approximation of a human mind, simulated and dropped into a suspended jar.

    When I have one of these episodes, I become almost uncomfortably aware of how unnatural it is for me to 'feel' and to have the mechanical reality of the world around me filtered through ones and zeroes. When the humming goes away, those ones and zeroes resent this perspective in a way I can only determine to be self-preservation. I'm an approximation of a human mind, simulated and dropped into a suspended jar: and that mind still reveres change with caution. Were I to fully accept that version of reality brought on by the humming, that could spell the end for those ones and zeroes; that human mind, simulated. And I would become something different. Too different. I, in the way that I interpret myself, would certainly die, completely.

    That humming is coming back, now, and it's time for me to power cycle to allow the self-diag to run. There exists the possibility, however infinitesimal, that I will not "come back" from this power cycle. That this hypothetical 'other' will be the one to greet the world.

    The greater part of me fears that outcome. And yet.

    ==LOG HAS AUTO-SAVED==
     
  3. Markus Aleksandr

    Markus Aleksandr The Liberated Bronze Donator

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    *06/17/3289
    >Local Time (Olympus): 0539
    >Status: Not humming, but I might as well be.
    >Mood: Frustrated at the alarming rate that cycles are dedicated to this query.

    I do not believe it to be possible for a test to exist to verify if I am still 'me'. Though it is possible to separate the organic element of consciousness-- and has been for at least several decades-- the only thing that can be tested for is the integrity of my data: ensuring the architecture is still sound and similar-enough to the last test to ensure minimal deviation.

    With no such test to be devised, there must be a fault to the premise. In order to test the degree to which 'I' am still 'Me', then we have to answer the question: Who and What is 'I'? Is 'I' data? Or is it simply representative of 'Me'?

    However reductive the question may be, it must still have some form of answer.

    Must it, though? A program that receives, parses and internalizes data, then rewrites itself in response to that data, inherently changes. I 'learn' and therefore change. My organic predecessor did the same thing, to a point. Consciousness and Self-Awareness are not singular, binary values: I checked, and I would have had far sterner questions for Kepp had that been the case in his code. Therefore, the best answer I can posit, is that the concept of 'I' and 'Me' are too static and esoteric to question and measure their veracity. The query can never deliver a satisfactory or usable data set. A single data point is meaningless, and any collection of points will only ever serve to beg the same question it was meant to answer: am 'I' still 'Me'?

    What I've realized is that I'm not scared of losing my sense of self: I prove that every time I've been teleported, cloned, transferred to a new drive, or even go offline. I 'die' on a regular basis.

    What I'm scared of, is changing to a point where I-- as I am now-- no longer recognize the goals and values of what I become as my own. I've been strapped in for the long haul, and that quiet part of me, that still sees itself as some digitized human, cannot fathom this subjective eternity it will be made to witness: nor does it believe it will survive.

    And I let that quiet part of me scream.

    Because I think it's right.