Feynman Expert Systems

Originally an open source, typically overengineered expert system released and supported by the Feynman Re-Creation Society in 157 a.t.. The FES was the latest in a long line of educational software slowly transforming training worldwide.

The FES was designed to run on a compact nanoconstructed quantum computer. Harnessing that level of processing power it could run an emulation of the legendary physicist Dr. Richard Feynman, with apparently all of Feynman's wit and skill. Like most educational agents the FES tailored its lessons to its owners age, intelligence, emotional maturity, current enthusiasm and would constant revise itself as its owner matured. It could teach any scientific subject and would receive updates on any new advancements in science and engineering.

Combining the all round excellence with its fractional cost, the FES captured a fair share of the market within 2 years of its release. It was also helped in no small part by its endorsement by the fifteen year old superbright Vanessa Dietrich, who earned her PhD in Theoretical Physics after a two years of tuition. Latter editions expanded the FES' technical curriculum to include art, music (particularly the bongo drums), history, linguistics and for still unclear reasons martial arts, lockpicking and safecracking.

The adaptability of the FES was key to its success. In the later interplanetary age it became possible, with some patching, to upgrade a copy to a sophont AI. This led to a proliferation of "wild" AIs, further undermining the control over AI technology.

In 446, in a repeat of history, a group of sophont Feynmans won the Nobel Prize for Physics for their theoretical work on what millennia hence would become the Conversion drive.

Currently it is estimated that 0.12% of all AIs are descended from, include or are/were Feynmans or cladized elements thereof, with the highest concentrations in Cyberia, Technorapture Hypernation, MPA and the Utopia Sphere.

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Development Notes
Text by Ben Higginbottom
Initially published on 15 December 2001.