Liar, Liar!

October 18, 2013

functional chartShow Stopper

“That’s a fat lie!”, Kelvin screamed at the top of his lungs. “I would have never signed up for this had I been made aware at the briefing”, he exclaimed.

“A lie”, Salomon chuckled softly. “You know with certainty that your biovatars can’t lie – you made them so”, Salomon replied in a most collected and calm manner, oozing self-confidence thick like Canadian maple syrup and knowing he’d push every single one of Kelvin’s buttons.

“I made them the way you ordered me to make”, Kelvin retorted with a sudden trace of discouragement in his voice.

“Be that as it may, lying isn’t within their realm of options”, Salomon persisted. “The truth table is infallable, you know that. And the way I remember it, we went over that during briefing more than one time.”

“No such thing as infallable”, Kelvin hissed back, barely audible. “If you knew the first damn thing about mathematics and logics, you would have seen the infeasability of this project your damn self”, he now said with firm resolve and gritted teeth, almost salivating with rage. “But kissing your investors’ asses apparently rules your days. Guess, you must have come to like it.” Kelvin knew that he was way out of bounds. On the other hand, he was very sure that they needed him. If anyone, he was the person to complete a project that had left many hopeless and burnt a plethora of intimidatingly intelligent – not to mention hungry – predator-like up-and-comers from various think-tanks that had been hired on and off, while this madness of an undertaking barreled along, ridiculing any budget calculation done prior to initiation.

Our investors”, Salomon blandly deflected Kelvin’s insult. “They put food on your table and in your kids’ mouth. And they afford your wife’s fancy ‘time outs’ at the spa, when she’s been long over your face and marriage. How many times do we have to reiterate this?”, he continued with the faintest trace of impatience.

Kelvin paid him no attention. He had fixed his eyes on the status report coming back from the latest in-vivo audit. 35 out of 100 biovatars were sent back with a malfunction flag. He didn’t have to read the fine print of that. Malfunction meant bad news, in particular in this high a number. It basically boiled down to a 100% failure in design. And he had lost count of how many times he had gone over the functional specs documents in order to identify a false assessment on his own part. The engineering team had overindulged on break points in the operating system’s code, but still – at some point, those damn heaps of carbon, wires, silicon and a central battery pack the size of a grown-up’s liver ran into an infinite loop. He just didn’t seem able to track down the error.

“What am I going to tell the board?”, Salomon insisted while poking around his nailbeds with boredom, not even raising a brow.

© W. Nieke, all rights reserved