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29. The Ghosts in the Machine
Frank Poole's immediate reaction was one of utter astonishment, followed by overwhelming joy. He had never really believed that he would make any kind of contact, either with the Europs or the Monolith. Indeed, he had even had fantasies of kicking in frustration against that towering ebon wall and shouting angrily, 'Is there anybody home?'
Yet he should not have been so amazed: some intelligence must have monitored his approach from Ganymede, and permitted him to land. He should have taken Ted Khan more seriously.
'Dave,' he said slowly, 'is that really you?'
Who else could it be? a part of his mind asked. Yet it was not a foolish question. There was something curiously mechanical - impersonal about the voice that came from the small speaker on Falcon's control board.
YES, FRANK. I AM DAVE.
There was a very brief pause: then the same voice continued, without any change of intonation:
HELLO FRANK. THIS IS HAL.
Well - Indra, Dim - I'm glad I recorded all that, otherwise you'd never believe me...
I guess I'm still in a state of shock. First of all, how should I feel about someone who tried to - who did - kill me - even if it was a thousand years ago! But I understand now that Hal wasn't to blame; nobody was. There's a very good piece of advice I've often found useful 'Never attribute to malevolence what is merely due to incompetence' I can't feel any anger towards a bunch of programmers I never knew, who've been dead for centuries.
I'm glad this is encrypted, as I don't know how it should be handled, and a lot that I tell you may turn out to be complete nonsense. I'm already suffering from information overload, and had to ask Dave to leave me for a while - after all the trouble I've gone through to meet him! But I don't think I hurt his feelings: I m not sure yet if he has any feelings...
What is he - good question! Well, he really is Dave Bowman, but with most of the humanity stripped away - like - ah - like the synopsis of a book or a technical paper. You know how an abstract can give all the basic information but no hint of the author's personality? Yet there were moments when I felt that something of the old Dave was still there. I wouldn't go so far as to say he's pleased to meet me again - moderately satisfied might be more like it... For myself, I'm still very confused. Like meeting an old friend after a long separation, and finding that they're now a different person. Well, it has been a thousand years - and I can't imagine what experiences he's known, though as I'll show you presently, he's tried to share some of them with me.
And Hal - he's here too, without question. Most of the time, there's no way I can tell which of them is speaking to me. Aren't there examples of multiple personalities in the medical records? Maybe it's something like that.
Vybrané tipy na oblíbený obsah (nejnavštěvovanější v poslední době):
- Jan Neruda
- Jaroslav Hašek
- kniha Kulička od Guy de Maupassanta
- Giovanni Boccaccio a jeho Dekameron
- Tulák po hvězdách od Jacka Londona
- Divá Bára od Boženy Němcové
- pohádky bratří Grimmů
- Josef Kajetán Tyl
- Ezopovy Bajky
- kniha Alenka v říši divů