SOURCE P17 V3/8.
Machine Man (serial)
“Oh,” Lola said. “I see.”
She walked in a circle around my prototype leg three times. She stopped beside the die stamp that had crushed my old one, although she didn’t know that. It was gleaming clean and humming on standby. You couldn’t leave that caliber of machinery idle just because some idiot managed to lose a limb in it. It was expensive as all get-out.
“That looks heavy,” she said.
“It’s about 180 pounds,” I admitted. “It tends to dent the floor.”
“How do you lift it?”
“I don’t. It walks by itself.”
Lola looked at me.
“See that tripod wheel at the base? That rotates. There’s always some part of it touching the ground.”
“Huh.”“Huh. And what’s this?” She crept closerpointed at a squat black box, protruding from one side.
“The processor.” I rubbed my chin. “I’m not really happy with the positioning. It’s a little vulnerable.”
“What does it do?”
“Oh. You know. Basic monitoring and control. GPS. Data storage. Wi-fi.”
She blinked. “Your leg has wi-fi?”
“Of course. Otherwise it couldn’t interface with Google Maps for optimum path-finding.”
Lola looked at me blankly.
“Basic encapsulation,” I explained. “You shouldn’t need to it. Thenkeep telling your leg where to step. You should tell it where you want to go, and let it figure out how to get you there.”
She looked back at the leg. I don’t think she really understood encapsulation. But she liked it. She squatted, reached out, and touched it.
I cleared my throat. “What do you think?”
She ran herHer fingers downran over the chrome. They caressed the plastic. “It’s the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen.”
I felt myself flushing. “Thanks.”