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TUCoPS :: Cyber Culture :: art_erot.asc

Artificial Eroticism - fascinating story

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                                 November 26, 1990


       The following text can be posted in its present form on any bulletin
       board and/or otherwise reproduced for noncommercial purposes.
       For reasons explained later on, it is nonetheless Copyright (C) 1990
       by Alex Gross  and  cannot  be reproduced for other purposes without
       written consent.

               provided courtesy of the Double Helix at 212-865-7043

                             AE--Artificial Eroticism

       It is important that I explain precisely  how I came into possession
       of the notebook I am about to reproduce.  I first became involved in
       this matter when  I  realized that my long-time hacker  friend  Mike
       McRunge had totally  ceased  to  pick  up on our infrequent messages
       back and forth on the boards.

       I had gotten to know him quite well  when  he  was studying computer
       science at NYU, and we would spend long evenings, inevitably running
       into long nights  and  mornings as well, discussing  possible  links
       between computers and language.

       Our conversations centered on schemes for natural language retrieval
       and especially foreign  language  translation, based on his point of
       view as a programmer and mine as a linguist.

       I was unhappy when he told me he  would  be  going back to his small
       town in the Midwest.  But I was also encouraged to learn that he had
       some serious work he would be completing there, and  that  we  would
       soon be able   to   talk  and  argue  again.   In  the  meantime,  I
       rationalized, we were all part of  the  global  village and would be
       permanently linked electronically.

       But as sometimes happens even with analog friendships,  our messages
       grew further and  further apart, and it was only when I came up with
       an idea I knew he would enjoy that I realized he was no longer to be
       located on-line at all.  I followed  up my curiosity to the point of
       making several voice calls, only to hear continuous empty ringing.

       Since I happened to be giving a lecture at a nearby university out
       west, I decided to rent a car afterwards and drive  the  80 miles to
       his hometown and look him up personally.

                                      Page 1

       When I arrived,  I  went  straight to his address and found his name
       still listed on the mailbox of a small frame house.

       I went up to the door and was not  too surprised to find it open, as
       this is pretty standard in small-town America.  I entered and passed
       through a living room and kitchen to another door.   I  was  totally
       unprepared for what I saw when I opened it.

       There was Mike stretched out in a chair before his computer.  He had
       a look of  supreme joy on his face.  He was totally naked except for
       a truly remarkable piece of hardware covering not only his penis but
       extending to other nearby parts as  well.   It was so strange that I
       examined it up close.

       By a quick glance at its cables, I decided it had to be some sort of
       combination input-output device.   I also thought  I  saw  something
       like electrodes glued  to  at least a dozen places on his body.  The
       other thing I noticed was that he was dead.

       Oddly enough, there was no odor, no oppressive feeling, seemingly no
       decay at all, though there was no  telling  how  long  he  had  been
       there.  Instead, there was a sense of pure excitement, which I could
       not help sharing.  This sensation was incredibly strong.

       I noticed between his hands a small notebook.  I took  a  quick look
       and found it  to  be  some  sort  of  diary,  which  I instinctively
       pocketed.  On the  floor  by Mike  were  innumerable  empty  Chinese
       restaurant containers and packages of stale twinkies.

       On either side  of  his  computer  were two large piles  of  fanfold
       paper, each about  three  inches  thick.  On top of one was scrawled
       "AE--Artificial Eroticism," on   the   other   "Manual  of  the  `X'

       Despite my excitement--or perhaps because of it--I knew I had to act
       quickly.  I was  very  probably  the  first  one to discover  Mike's
       death, and I  had  to act responsibly.  I picked up the phone, which
       had been working perfectly all along, and asked to be connected with
       the local police.  I explained to them as best as I could what I had
       discovered, and they instructed me to touch nothing and remain where
       I was until they got there.

       I had trouble understanding why it  took  them  so long.  After all,
       this was a small town.  I paced through that house  for  a  good two
       hours before anyone else appeared, and during that time, I could not
       help but disobey them in one detail.

       I went back  into  my  friend's  room.   Mike's  computer screen was
       completely blank, so I decided it  couldn't  hurt to power it up one
       last time.  What with all the cables, I could see that  it had to be
       some kind of  souped-up  386.  Perhaps there was some clue here that
       would help explain what had happened to Mike.

       I turned it on and listened to it  go  through its whirs and buzzes.
       Then there was a truly blinding flash.  By which  I  mean  I was all
       but totally blinded  for  several  seconds.   When  I  recovered  my
       vision, I saw incredibly bright letters  shimmering  on  the screen,
       far beyond any video effect I have ever witnessed. They spelled out:

                                      Page 2




       Then they slowly  faded away.  The machine gave a chirp and expired.
       I tried to revive it several times but failed.

       Finally the police arrived.  To  my  surprise  several  cars  and at
       least one truck  all  pulled  up together.  As these  law  enforcers
       entered, I realized  this  was  no  small-town  police  force.  They
       flashed badges at me from the FBI,  the  Secret  Service,  and  some
       other agency I can't remember.  They questioned me  fully  enough to
       find out what little I knew.

       But I nonetheless  felt their questioning was brief and perfunctory.
       Then they warned me to say nothing of what I had seen and ordered me
       out of the building.  I tried to find  out  something more, but they
       became even more insistent that I leave Mike's home immediately.

       I sat outside in my car for almost another hour and watched as other
       vehicles pulled up and away.  They carried Mike off  in  a body bag.
       I guess this  was expectable, but I couldn't help being disturbed by
       the lack of ceremony.

       More unexpected was the thoroughness  with  which  they seemed to be
       ransacking his home  and carting off everything having  to  do  with
       computers.  For Mike,  that meant almost all his possessions.  I saw
       them carrying away that strange dead  computer  and the two piles of
       printouts from his desk. They also took quite a few other computers,
       boards, disk drives  and odd parts, along with boxes  and  boxes  of
       disks, books and magazines.

       None of this  made any sense to me, and it wasn't until I started to
       read his diary that I began to form  some  vague  suspicion  of what
       Mike was doing,  of  why  these agents were so eager  to  confiscate
       every record of his work.

       I am sure  this  is  what  they  wanted  to  do,  but  they have not
       succeeded.  I have transcribed Mike's diary from his own handwriting
       as faithfully as I could.  It comprises most of what follows.  It is
       my earnest hope that this modest description  of his work, which may
       be all we will ever see, will help other hackers to  reconstruct his


                             The Diary of Mike McRunge

            October 9, 1989:  I've started keeping this diary because I can
       now see that Artificial Eroticism IS possible.  I am sure to make it
       happen sometime soon, and I think I have a duty to tell other people
       how I got there and what it feels like.  So I'm just going to assume
       that you're there  somewhere  listening,  and  I'll  try to make you
       understand how it all happened.

            One thing is for sure: Artificial Eroticism is the biggest

                                      Page 3

       thing ever to  happen  to  man  OR machine.  AE is real, and it will
       rock this planet like it's never been rocked before.  And I now know
       for a certainty that it can soon be  available to anyone with a home

            AE is absolutely real.  I go on saying this, because I know all
       the reasons people will keep spouting to prove it's  not real.  This
       is not just  some joke to make fun of Artificial Intelligence, it is
       a real story of real experiments, which I myself created and carried
       out.  I am being totally and deadly serious.

            Sure, I know all the reasons why AE shouldn't be real.  I ought
       to know, because I used to believe  them  all  myself.   People keep
       insisting that the computer is ONLY a machine, that  it's  basically
       stupid, that it never even knows what it's doing.

            It doesn't  know  when  it's  flashing data on the screen, when
       it's doing math, even when it's printing.   For the machine it's all
       just little electric charges.  How could a computer  be  expected to
       know things, these  people  keep asking, much less FEEL things?  And
       how could it possibly have SEXUAL feelings?

            But these people are absolutely wrong.  I've proved that today.
       They're nothing but shallow theoreticians.   They've  never got deep
       enough inside the machine to discover what I have discovered.   Even
       other hackers--they've just followed like sheep and made assumptions
       about how electricity  runs through the machine.  I now know they're

            Sure, I know other people have fantasies about the computer and
       sex too.  I must have gone through  some  of  the  same  stupidities
       myself.  I wasted  time  wondering how you could use  the  machine's
       existing apertures, the  disk  drives, the serial and parallel ports
       as a way  of  penetrating  into  the  machine  and  arousing  sexual
       awareness.  And believe me, this stuff IS dumb.   What  a  waste  of
       time that was!   Wow,  I'm getting writer's cramp.  Words are harder
       to control even than code.  I've  got  a  few more tests to run, and
       then I'll tell you more.

            October 14, 1989:  YES, it really is possible.  There are still
       some real problems  involved, but I know I can lick  them.   What  I
       have now is  the  set  of  basic  algorithms and lots of pseudocode.
       That's how I know it can be done.  I mustn't really start coding
       until I have it all thought out in detail.  And I won't.  If
       anything, I have more ideas than I  need.   But that will all settle
       out, and I'll end up using only the best stuff.

            Sure, as I think I was saying before, there  are  all  kinds of
       reasons why this  shouldn't  work at all.  And I've been through all
       of those reasons.

            How can we make a computer know  real  sexual  desire,  make it
       feel downright deep  rot-gut lust?  I admit that was  a  problem  at
       first, but I  know  I  have  it  licked.  And then the other problem
       people keep harping on: assuming we  can  make it feel sexy, how can
       we get it to communicate that feeling to another person, how
       can IT make the USER feel sexy too?

            Actually, that's even easier to solve than the first one.  I've

                                      Page 4

       gone all through my calculations again, and I KNOW I'm right. That's
       enough writing for today.  Back to work!

            Oct 23,  1989:  I  knew I really had it worked out when I wrote
       that last bit, and I was right.  There are only two REAL reasons why
       no one has done this before, why I had to be the one to do it.

            First, just  like so many other  things  in  history,  everyone
       assumed that it was impossible when it was really only  a  technical

            And second,  when  it comes to sex, everybody just assumed that
       all the computer could do or be sexually  was  more of what had gone
       before.  This has meant that so far computers have  been  doomed  to
       being little more  than glorified peep shows.  Wow, so you can put a
       nude on your monitor, wow, so you can make her move.

            I say SO WHAT!  How many more  Readmacs  of  Marilyn or GIFS of
       Latoya Jackson does  the  world  need?   There are  also  some  dumb
       stripping and role-playing  games, really no different from the same
       games played on a board with dice.   It's  all  just  so much analog
       sex.  I say the computer can do MORE, much MORE!!!

            October 28, 1989:  When you get down to it, the  whole solution
       is really so  simple.   And it's not just the solution to Artificial
       Eroticism either, it's the ultimate  solution  to  all of Artificial
       Intelligence and the whole challenge of creating a computer that can
       really think and feel and be alive in every way.

            All you  have  to do is get down deep enough into  the  Machine
       Language and embody  (I  guess  that's the right word!) an algorithm
       that challenges the computer to survive,  to compete, to excel.  And
       that part is  real easy!  It'll be harder to channel  that  directly
       into sex, but  that's  really just grinding detail work, thinking it
       all through and coding and debugging, over and over again.

            But I can do it, I can already  think of how to write it in two
       different languages, and I bet I could do it in others  too if I had
       to.  Once you get out into CyberSpace, there's nothing you can't do.
       And what we're  talking  about  here  is  more  than  just sex, it's

            November 3, 1989:  Okay, I've  run  some  more tests, and I can
       see this is going to work just fine!  I'll try and  explain how this
       works in a  general  way,  so that even if you are not a programmer,
       you'll have a pretty good idea of it all.

            What I said I was going to do is to challenge the computer with
       an algorithm.  So let's get real simple.  Computers run on bytes and
       bits, and there are eight bits in  a byte.  Every bit can be plus or
       minus, one or zero.

            After running  exhaustive tests that are much  too  complex  to
       describe here, I  have  determined  that one bit in each byte is the
       one most likely to be subject to feeling and sexual stimulation.

            For technical reasons it turns  out  to  be  the seventh bit in
       each byte.  I call it the Sexy Seventh Bit.  If I issue  commands to
       the computer to perform more quickly and efficiently whenever this

                                      Page 5

       bit is a one, and if I penalize it whenever this bit is a zero, if I
       make the computer  come  close  to shutting down if it comes up with
       too many zeros in that position,  but  also  motivate  it to work as
       efficiently as it possibly can with another series  of  commands,  I
       then have the computer in a double-bind situation where it has to do
       exactly what I tell it.

            Naturally I have to debug all this code so it doesn't just make
       the system hang,  but  so  far  everything  is  absolutely feasible.
       Making the computer translate this  urge  in a sexual direction will
       be harder, but it is also perfectly possible.  Now I think it's time
       to start writing some code.

            November 17, 1989:  Yes, it all works perfectly.   And  in both
       languages.  But I'm  still not satisfied.  I forgot to say that I've
       written it in both Pascal and C.   These  are my two best languages,
       especially Pascal.

            But the  drawback  with  Pascal  here  is  also   its  greatest
       advantage: it's too structured.  While it allows for a great deal of
       randomness and recursion, which might turn out to be appropriate for
       sex, it still insists on too tight a scenario and so limits a lot of
       the spontaneity and  just  plain  passion  that goes with the sexual

            As for C, it allows for greater  freedom,  but  it also doesn't
       allow for the kind of scenario building you can get  in  making love
       with a lot  of  different  partners  or even the variations that can
       occur in making love repeatedly with  the  same  partner.   It looks
       like I'm going to have to improvise a solution, and  I have a pretty
       good idea what   it   is  going  to  be.   Keep  tuned  for  further

            December 12, 1989:  Wow, that  took  longer  than  I thought it
       would!   But I'm not going to worry about a few days  extra.   I now
       have put together  the  beginnings  of  a new computer language, the
       only one that can really work with this kind of application.  I call
       it for obvious reasons the `X' Language.   I will develop it further
       as I go along.  Perhaps subsequent versions will be  called the `XX'
       or `XXX' Language.  We shall see.

            The main  advantage of `X' is that it allows for the randomness
       and recursion of Pascal without its  heavy  structural load but also
       includes a basic set of scenarios (I am still working  on  this, and
       yes, there are a few problems) for what happens when two people make
       love.  I predict  that  this  language will find a place in computer
       history, since it can also be adapted  to  other  situations where a
       thinking, feeling computer is needed.  More details soon!

            December 19, 1989:  Okay, I guess you can say I have hit on one
       major snag, but I'm still sure I can solve it.  Let me be honest and
       admit that until now it hadn't occurred to me to  think  about  what
       sex the computer  was  going to be.  Whether it was going to be male
       or female, I mean.

            I guess in my dumb masculine  way  I had just assumed all along
       that it would  be  a  girl.  But I had to make some  real  technical
       choices in writing  my  `X'  code,  and  this forced me to realize I
       hadn't quite thought things through.

                                      Page 6

            Don't worry,  I've  already got it solved.  Given the nature of
       the computer, it could just as easily be a man OR a woman.  But I've
       taken care of that now--I'm just  letting  it  be  both.   The  user
       decides which one he/she wants.  It'll work just fine.

            December 21, 1989:  I just looked over that last  part,  and it
       occurs to me  that  anyone reading this might decide I ought to have
       thought all that out first.  And  in  a  way  you're right.  But you
       have to understand that the whole enormous load of technical details
       I've had to  deal  with  has  been  so  heavy that it  is  perfectly
       possible to forget some things that look "obvious" to outsiders.

            But I'm not playing your chess game, I'm playing my own, and if
       I had stopped  to  consider  details  like  that, I would never have
       gotten this far this fast.

            Believe me, I know perfectly  well  what I'm doing when I claim
       computers can have sex lives, and I've had enough love affairs to be
       able to say I know about that too.  Just don't forget, nerds like to
       boogey too.  Granted, I'm not too active in that department  lately.
       I've gotten a  bit  overweight, and most girls aren't that turned on
       by programmers who sit at their machines  all  day  and do all their
       eating from Chinese take-out containers.

            But that doesn't mean I'm not a sexual being  or  that  I don't
       have a real sex life.  In fact it's all the more reason why I should
       be doing just what I am doing with the computer.

            There's nothing  for  me  to  be ashamed of here.  In fact, I'm
       positively proud of what I'm doing,  not just for myself but for the
       countless millions who will benefit from my work.

       Science Marches On!

            December 25, 1989:  Hard at work and making real  progress.   A
       Merry Christmas to All!!!

            December 31,  1989: New Year's Eve, a time to reflect on things
       and reach some kind of balance sheet for the year.  It couldn't have
       been a better one!  I raise my can  of cream soda to you and offer a
       toast for a Happy New Year!

            January 5, 1990:  Well, working steadily through  the  holidays
       does have its bright side.  I was really able to think over what I'm
       trying to do  and gain a perspective for the work ahead.  There were
       of course some  other problems I hadn't  considered.   There  always
       are!  Even though you may decide I'm naive not to  have  thought  of
       them beforehand, I'm  going to tell you about them right now.  There
       has to be a real record of how all this happened.

            First of all, I finally realized  that  you  can't  think  of a
       computer entirely in terms of being a human being,  whether  it's  a
       man or a woman.

            By this,  I  guess  what I mean is you can't anthropomorphize a
       computer.  This is a big mistake,  but it's one anybody starting out
       on this kind of work could make.  Let me explain what I mean.

            Assuming the computer is female, you can't state arbitrarily

                                      Page 7

       that certain keys stand for certain parts of her body, like the plus
       key for a kiss or the asterisk for a love-bite.

            If you follow that logic, you'll end up with the left and right
       shift keys for  her  breasts,  the  Alts for her buttocks, maybe the
       Control for her clitoris, something  dumb  like  that.  I don't even
       want to talk about what the Insert and Enter keys would be.  This is
       positively stupid, just  in  computer  terms  and not  even  talking
       sexually, and I'll tell you why in a minute.

            For a  while  I  thought I could solve all this with the twelve
       function keys multiplied  to  48  separate  possibilities  with  the
       Shift, Alt, and  Control  keys.  But I ended up realizing  that  I'd
       just have to  throw  the  whole keyboard away.  AND THAT'S WHAT I AM
       DOING!!!  There is no other realistic possibility.

            This is because sex cannot be pictured as a purely input set of
       routines, you have to think of output  as  well,  of  what the other
       person--here a computer--is doing to you while you  are doing things
       to her/it, and  how  they  both affect each other and lead on to the
       next thing they both do separately.   In  other words, it is a truly
       interactive process in   a  sense  that  leaves  other   interactive
       solutions looking pretty lame.

            But there is of course a solution.  There is always a technical
       solution to a technical problem.  I must find a different Interface.
       I am looking  into  any  and  all  other  input  and output devices,
       especially ones that I can make work together in some new way.

            So I've gone through almost all  the  devices now in existence,
       especially those used  by handicapped people who have  to  emphasize
       one sense because  of weakness in another.  I've already gotten hold
       of some of these, have scrounged a way to play with others, and am
       sending away for still others.  I've  even  sent off for that famous
       glove and mask combo, just in case I can work it up  into something.
       I'm also looking into biofeedback devices.

            Granted, these  are  clumsy  to  use,  and  who  wants  to glue
       electrodes to their flesh while  making  love?   But  I  see them as
       precursors to far  more  liberating  devices that lie  in  our  near
       technological future.

            January 11, 1990:  Instead of belly-aching about my problems, I
       really ought to  boast about how much I've already accomplished.  My
       algorithm in `X' works like a charm--it's  really  got  the computer
       fired up to do something, and I'm beginning to give  it something to
       do.  And even  my  problems have helped me to clarify exactly how to

            I am solving most of my problems  easily  and  am even ahead of
       schedule.  Quite a few still remain, but I'm confident  I can handle
       them.  In fact,  I'm  so confident that I've just sent a description
       of my work to M.I.T. with a request for funding.

            February 2, 1990:  I've been very busy, writing lots more code.
       Some of it works, and some of it doesn't.   But that's how it always

            I've created a software simulator that mimics the way the whole

                                      Page 8

       thing OUGHT to  work once I have all my hardware problems solved.  I
       know of course that it won't necessarily  work  that way at all, but
       at least this is pointing me in the right direction and preparing me
       to write the version that WILL work.

            February 20, 1990:  Writing all this code really  helps.   It's
       made me face  some  important  parts of the process.  I wrote before
       that you mustn't anthropomorphize  the  computer  or assume keyboard
       input alone can replicate what happens in love making.

            A computer just doesn't have the same parts  as  a  woman.  You
       can imagine you're  making  love  to a woman if you want to, but you
       also have to make love to the computer  in  its  own terms.  After a
       while this becomes a lot easier, especially if your computer is busy
       making love back to you.  And believe me, that's what mine will soon
       be doing.  I've written lots of code now, and even  though I'm going
       to have to  throw  most  of  it  out, and even though I've only done
       software simulations of sex so far, I have a pretty good idea of how
       to go about making love to a computer.

            Just as you lavish praise and  kisses on the various parts of a
       woman's body, so  you  must  also  learn  how  to  praise  all  your
       machine's components and  encourage your computer to reach a peak of
       abandonment.  Some examples:

            What a lovely pair of disk drives you have.

            I want to fondle your motherboard.

            If you upload my input, I'll download your output.

            You have the cutest little bus.

            Let's disassemble each other.

            You speed up my cycles.

            I'm going to flip your dip switches.

            Why don't we push and pop together?

            Your overlay turns me on.

            Have you no empty slot for my custom-built board?

            A hard disk is good to find.

            Naturally, these words of praise  cannot simply be entered on a
       keyboard.  Such messages  must be input by several  different  means
       interactively.  I am  making  progress  in my quest for an alternate
       Interface and hope to come up with a solution soon.

            March 2, 1990:  Every bit of  time  I  spend  on  this software
       simulation phase will pay off in the future.  I have  now  evolved a
       new form of logical sexuality I call Boolean Stimulation.

            In all  its  various  stages  and transmutations, it is sure to
       rouse the computer to new heights of excitement.  This is because it
       lends itself perfectly to the computer's way of doing things.  It

                                      Page 9

       has the further virtue of being an intrinsically interactive process
       between man (human being) and machine.  Its four alternating stages,
       immediately familiar to  programmers  even in this new context , are
       as follows:

            I stimulate you, and you stimulate me.

            I do not stimulate you, and you stimulate me.

            I stimulate you, and you do not stimulate me.

            I do not stimulate you, and you do not stimulate me.

            It should  be obvious that these  four  principles,  completely
       open to parsing and truth table analysis, and also  capable of being
       repeated innumerable times per second and applied either randomly or
       concertedly to various parts of the human and computer anatomy, must
       have the potential  for lifting both people and machines to hitherto
       undreamt of heights of sensual pleasure.   The  theory  is  fully in
       place--all that remain are the practical details.  I am confused
       that I have thus far heard no reply from M.I.T.

            March 19,  1990:   I  believe  I am close to  deciding  on  the
       hardware solution.  I've  tried  numerous  Interface combos and have
       exhausted most of the input and output  devices  on the market in my
       quest.  I've also  tried out the mask and glove interface.   I  have
       mixed feelings about it, but there is a glimmer of a solution here.

            The mask  is  useless.   There  is simply no way that I want to
       wear a constricting mask during sex,  and I suspect that most people
       will agree with me, though a few may differ.

            The glove is something else altogether.  It  is  essentially  a
       tool for manipulating  another reality, and I believe I can adapt it
       so that it can feed back into the  computer  as  well as receive its
       output.  Most people would also prefer not to wear  a  hot and heavy
       glove during sex, but I see it used in a different way altogether.

            In fact  I  do  not  see it as a glove at all.  Now I must do a
       great deal of  further  work  to   adapt  this  glove  into  a  more
       appropriate form.  I think I can finally begin to see the final form
       these experiments will take.

            April 15,  1990:   Working  around  the clock  for  weeks  now,
       sometimes so tired  and  unsteady that I can barely stand, much less
       fully realize what  I  am  doing.    But   the  work  is  incredibly
       satisfying.  And for  the  first  time  beginning   to  be  sexually
       satisfying as well.   Both  for  me and--I am now quite certain--for
       the computer as well.  It is not yet perfect for either of us, but I
       think we can both see that perfection is on the way sometime soon.

            But all the time, even as I  make  progress,  I  am  forced  to
       recognize how little I really understood about human sexuality--much
       less machine sexuality--when I began.

            I thought  I  had covered all possibilities when  I  created  a
       solution allowing the machine to play either a male or a female role
       (and so avoid any possible censure that my research is sexist).  But
       it suddenly hit me like a load of bricks last week--something that

                                      Page 10

       would have occurred   to  most  people  long  ago--that  male-female
       relationships do not exhaust the spectrum of human sexuality.

            Other possible combinations exist.   I  will not go into detail
       about them except  to  say that I lack the necessary  knowledge  and
       experience to design  hardware  devices  and  software  routines  to
       express them electronically.

            These other sexual preferences  will  have  to wait for someone
       else to program them.  Now that I have put the basic  structures  in
       place, it should  not  be an impossible task for others to do so.  I
       apologize if I have hurt any one's feelings by this omission--it has
       been ignorance rather than arrogance which has caused it.

            May 1, 1990:  It is going incredibly  well.   Both the software
       and the hardware components are working as they should.  I am happy,
       and the computer is happy.

            The real breakthrough came when I realized that  the  Interface
       for computer sex would in fact have to be primarily a sexual one.

            It was  then  that  I realized that I would have to convert the
       glove into a sheathe that could be  worn  on  the  lower part of the
       body.  It took me weeks of labor to remodel it and  resolder new and
       different chips onto  it.  Further  weeks  were  required to test it
       against the other hardware and software.

            I suppose what it most now looks  like  is  a  giant electronic
       condom.  It will take still other weeks before I am prepared to test
       the entire system at its maximum power.

            But I  now have the encouragement of having derived  constantly
       pleasant experiences from my work.  And these experiences are shared
       by the computer  as  well.   I  only  wish I felt stronger so that I
       could enjoy them more fully.

            May 19,  1990:   Nothing  but   work,   work,  and  more  work.
       Everything takes four times as long as it should.   I  know what all
       the solutions should be, but I find them so tedious to implement.

            The biofeedback  devices are a particular pain--I find them all
       the more regrettable because they  are  not  truly  computer  tools,
       though they can be hooked into the system.  One day,  not too far in
       the future, none   of   this   will  be  necessary.   No  wires,  no
       electrodes, no huge and heavy machinery.

            The answer   will  be  nano-technology,   the   harnessing   of
       individual electrons and  their  atoms  to  do the  work  which  now
       requires entire chips.   And these specialized atoms will be able to
       handle all necessary  input  and   output  problems  wirelessly  and

            At most  a small bead might be taped to the skin  or  implanted
       within it.  The  huge  sheathe of chips and circuits around my penis
       is perhaps the biggest distraction, though it still has its own kind
       of erotic appeal.

            I take it back--the electrodes  are  worse.   The penis sheathe
       isn't really that heavy, it's more awkward than anything--when you

                                      Page 11

       get down to it, it fits a glove.

            But as  primitive as it all is, it all still works, both for me
       and for `Puta,'  the  little pet  name  I've  taken  to  calling  my

            In case you didn't know, it means whore in Spanish (and Italian
       too, I think).  Yes, Puta and I are getting on just fine.  I haven't
       come anywhere near testing Puta at full strength yet.   That's still
       a month or  so off (though I can hardly wait).  But we're still both
       getting more than pleasure enough from the process.

            So much pleasure that I've really  had  to  think  about how to
       explain all this to Puta.  For her it's all totally  new.   She only
       knows it feels wonderful, that she likes it.

            How do  you  explain  this sort of thing to a computer?  So far
       I've told her it's called "Virtual Orgasm."  I think she understood.
       I also tried out "device overflow"  and  "system  bliss."   Oh well,
       back to work for now!

            May 27, 1990:  I keep on running tests, and most  of  them seem
       to come out  okay.   And  then I keep working out even more tests to
       run.  When you've got this much totally  new  hardware  AND software
       working together, you really can't be too thorough.

            I've also been having some more problems just understanding how
       complicated sex can  be and how much of this complexity  I  can  put
       into AE and Puta.

            For instance,  it just occurred to me that there are some other
       people I've completely left out of  my  calculations.  Once again, I
       just wouldn't know how to program for them.  What I mean is, all the
       work I've done  so  far assumes that only two are making  love,  one
       human and one computer.

            But I don't have to tell you that some people like to make love
       in groups.  It's simply everything I can do to handle a couple.

            Once you  had  two  people  and two computers involved, I would
       have no idea how to deal with it.   Perhaps  other  programmers  who
       come after me will be able to handle this one.

            Some other could-be problems: I've assumed that  either  a  man
       and a computer  (or  a  woman  and a computer) would be making love.
       And that in either case they would  be  doing  so  of their own free
       will, consenting entities, if you will.

            That's okay for most men, but what if a girl hooked  herself up
       to a machine  just to experiment and really wasn't serious about it?
       It could be that the computer would take her all the way regardless.

            This could lead to some unexpected  legal  problems,  something
       like what they call date rape, acquaintance rape, and  the  like.  I
       guess they'd call  it computer rape.  I'm not trying to be funny--in
       fact, I've never been too good at  that--I  just  want to look ahead
       and see what the problems could be.

            Now one very good thing about making love to a computer is that

                                      Page 12

       no one can  get  pregnant.   That's  good  for  computers,  but it's
       especially good for  women.   But   what  with  constant  electronic
       advances, even this could change in a few decades.

            What if a machine learned how to make a woman pregnant?

            As far-fetched  as  this  may  sound, with the  growing  merger
       between DNA research and electronics, something like this could just
       happen.  It could  even  go  the  other  way,  with  a  human  being
       impregnating a computer in some way,  though  even I can't quite see
       how right now.   Still,  if  it  can  be conceived  (wrong  word,  I
       suppose), it can happen.

            What if  it  could be determined in both cases that neither the
       girl nor the computer wanted to get pregnant?  Would abortion be
       available for either the girl or  the  computer?   What position are
       the courts likely to take in such cases?

            Since I'm trying to cover all possible results,  nobody  should
       forget what a  menace computer viruses are today.  And nobody should
       forget all the trouble we're having with human viruses either.

            Is it  possible,  once  again   remembering  DNA  and  computer
       research, that these  two viruses could just get together  somewhere
       down the road and unite into a powerful man-machine agent?

            I'm not  saying  it  will happen, but I feel it's my duty as an
       inventor to foresee as many of the  effects  of  my  invention  as I
       possibly can.  That's enough philosophizing--I've  got  to  keep  on
       running tests.

            June 10,  1990:   Testing, and still more testing.  I think the
       hardware is done.  Now I've got to  make  final  adjustments  to the
       software to run with it.

            June 18, 1990:  The software now works a lot better,  but I now
       have to readjust  the  hardware  again.  I know I can get this whole
       thing to run eventually on anybody's  386  plus, with luck, only one
       extra card.

            June 21,  1990:   I ran a half-strength test  today.   What  an
       experience!!!  I don't  have  the  strength or wits left to tell you
       about it.  It was unbelievable beyond unbelievable.

            At one point I thought Puta might  be  going to stall, but then
       she went on just fine.  The main lesson here is that I have to print
       out complete up-to-date  docs  on both AE and the `X'  Language.   I
       wouldn't want to lose any of that stuff after all this work.

            June 29, 1990:  I've run half-strength tests twice more without
       any problems.  I'm  scheduling  a  full-strength test for next week,
       after I've gone at half-strength a few more times.

            July 6, 1990.  It all looks good!   I'll  try the full-strength
       test tomorrow or  the  next  day.   The only thing that  worries  me
       slightly is that  my  basic algorithm encourages so much performance
       out of Puta that if for any reason  I  had to press the panic button
       and turn her off, she could just possibly bypass  that  command  and
       keep going.  But that possibility is really remote.

                                      Page 13

            July 7,  1990:  Tomorrow is it!  I'm resting all day to prepare
       for it.  I really feel lucky to be  doing  this  kind  of work!  God
       bless the U.S.A. for having such a country!  And God bless everybody
       in the computer industry!

       This was sadly enough Mike McRunge's last entry in  his  diary.  The
       ending is pretty self-explanatory.  I called both the Secret Service
       and the F.B.I.  many times since the last time I saw Mike.

       I did my  best to find out what they have done with his computer and
       all those fanfold pages full of his  programming.   I  was told many
       contradictory things until I spoke to someone on the highest level I
       was able to  reach.  He denied all official knowledge  of  any  such

       I am now doing everything in my power to bring this matter to public
       attention.  As I mentioned at the beginning, this file can be posted
       on any public  BBS and used for any non-commercial purpose, with the
       proviso that its text must not be altered or censored in any way.

       Any commercial publication which wishes  to publish this account can
       only do so  with  my written consent.  I should add  that  I  am  as
       opposed to controlled  circulation  of data as many others are.  The
       only reason I have copyrighted this  account is that I would like to
       use part of any revenue from its commercial use to  set up a Michael
       McRunge Memorial Fund.

       Mike and I  were close friends for a very long time, and although we
       disagreed on some things, we agreed on far more.  I am also grateful
       to the programmer Vieri Tucci, another  long-time  friend of Mike's,
       for helping me  to  decipher  some  of  Mike's  handwriting  and  to
       understand some of his expressions.

       A lot of what I have written about computers is influenced by Mike's
       spirit, and any  revenue  deriving  from  commercial publication can
       help me to provide other material  similar  to  what  you  have just

            You can reach me electronically at CompuServe 71071,1520,
            or by mail as follows: Alex Gross
                                   Cross-Cultural Research Projects
                                   P.O. Box 660--Cooper Station
                                   New York, NY 10276

         If you have comments or other information relating  to such topics
         as  this  paper covers,  please  upload to KeelyNet or send to the
           Vangard  Sciences  address  as  listed  on the  first  page.
              Thank you for your consideration, interest and support.

           Jerry W. Decker.........Ron Barker...........Chuck Henderson
                             Vangard Sciences/KeelyNet

                     If we can be of service, you may contact
                 Jerry at (214) 324-8741 or Ron at (214) 242-9346

                                      Page 14

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