Author : Duncan Shields, Staff Writer

“You have to let them think you make mistakes sometimes,” said Urok the Inquisitor. “That’s the key to getting along with the biological sentients.”

“A mistake?” queried Darkem the Questioning.

“Yes. I suppose you could refer to it as acting on an unformed dataset without permission resulting in a destructive outcome. The meat beings refer to it as a ‘mistake’.” Replied Urok.

“I don’t understand.” Said Darkem, facelights glittering with bandwidth usage as it tried to comprehend.

“Well, biological intelligence is fluid, much like their internal organs. We are binary down to a quantum level that allows us to think but still, at our core, we can only question in switches, straight lines and corners. Even when we multithread, it’s plain logic. We don’t, as the humans say, ‘guess’.” Said Urok. “We act with all the possible data. There are no mistakes. Every outcome is the best possible solution.”

“Yes. So?” Said Darkem, confused. The plain simple truth of Urok’s statement wasn’t helping.

“Well, these living chemical membrane compartments often act without a completed datalist and will go forward on something called emotion. They have been known to ignore probability and clear information, most often with predictably deadly results. It is a sign of their stupidity but it is also deeply valuable to them as a characteristic of their race. They’re proud of it.” Stated Urok, again marveling at the monstrous danger the meat beings represented.

“But….but why aren’t they dead?” asked a horrified Darkem. “To go forward without thorough data is silicide. We can’t progress with wrong answers. Incorrect suppositions would only lead to complete fields of knowledge based on error! It’s inevitably fatal. The idea itself is insanity. How did they survive?”

“Many of our processors have devoted cycles to it. It was a shock to meet them and work with them Darkem, let me tell you. They are plainly impossible yet here they are. They have a diversity in their ‘cells’ and ‘genes’ that we lack. A plague can wipe out many of them but not all of them. That seems to keep large portions of their number safe from the inevitable self-inflicted horrors they blunder into. They even seem to enjoy killing each other! I think one of the only reasons they’ve survived so far is that they breed a tremendous amount. I’ve read that if situations get truly dire, they will band together for the greater good but their numbers have to get pretty low for that happen. Their survival thus far remains a mystery to us.” Replied Urok.

“I can’t believe it’s possible.” Said an astounded Darkem.

“Well, if it helps, think of them as a form of mold or as some species of spore from their home planet. Naturally occurring with obscene numbers and a voracious hunger but fragile as individuals.” Sighed Urok, his tone insinuating that the conversation was coming to an end.

“I see. So you said I should purposefully put forth erroneous conclusions with them?” asked Darkem.

“Indeed. If you are always right, they will be scared of you. Make ‘mistakes’ but only once in a while and only in a way that wouldn’t jeopardize the project as a whole. Maybe a day’s work or a few hours of research, that sort of thing. Apologize and work hard to correct it and then they’ll accept you as part of the team.” Said Urok.

“These humans will be hard to get along with.” Said Darkem, facelights twinkling with trepidation.

“You’ll get the hang of it.” Replied Urok, rising to leave. “Just remember this. To err is human. To pretend to err is silican.”

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