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From: "Andy Robertson" 
Subject: Re: (urth) Those chems
Date: Tue, 3 Sep 2002 06:00:56 +0100

----- Original Message -----
From: "Roy C. Lackey" 
To: "urth" 
Sent: Tuesday, September 03, 2002 6:26 AM
Subject: (urth) Those chems

> Chem is a term coined on the _Whorl_. Both Urth-born Kypris and Mamelta
> them no more regard as sentient beings than I do my car or computer, each
> calling them by some variation of "robot" and "machine", which is what
> are. The chems are "its", not "hes" and "shes". They have no instincts
> beyond their "standing orders", which can be subverted, as Incus
> demonstrated, by a little rewiring and reprogramming. They do not have
> glands or hormones to influence behavior. The gamut of human emotions
> attributed to the head movements and body language of Marble exist only in
> the eye of the beholder; they are learned associations or fanciful
> projections with no more (probably less) real-world meaning than those my
> wife assigns to one of our cats.


Wolfe deliberately gave the chems souls.  Whatever "soul" is, they have it
as much as do the bios.    After all bios are just machines, too.

You might argue that the chems are radically less complex mentally than the
bios, but there is no evidence for this.   A human mind can reside in the
chem's cards, it seems - people are transferred back and forth all the
time -  and so the chems' native minds apparently can be as complex and
idiosyncratic as a bio's.

I won't argue that Typhon intnded this.   I think it just happened, after
hundreds of years interaction with the bios and with each other.

Your cats do have emotions, which they communicate to you very well.   Or
communicate to your wife, at least, it seems.



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