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Skynet Becomes Self-Aware: How to Welcome Our AI Overlords


The time has come. According to the Terminator clock, at 8:11 p.m. Tuesday, Skynet will become self-aware. And humanity will be screwed.

Going by canon set out in the Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles TV series, Judgment Day should hit Thursday. In these final few precious hours, there are several things members of the human race can do to prepare for total domination by our new artificially intelligent masters. Here’s a quick guide.

1. Attempt to Celebrate Doom Through Facebook

This may not necessarily save anyone, but for the brave few who choose to welcome our robot conquerers with open arms in hopes of making friends, there’s a Facebook event dedicated to celebrating the day Skynet Becomes Self-Aware. It’s already got nearly 7,000 people signed up to “CRUSHALLHUMANS/SAVE THE WORLD.”

That might not be easily done, though.

“I’ve been spontaneously deciding how to at least mark the zero hour,” said Scott McDaniel, the 39-year-old information architect from Atlanta who organized the Facebook event, in an e-mail to “I’m celebrating in meatspace by showing my fiancee’s parents The Terminator for the first time — as older, conservative Greeks it should be entertaining.”

Warning: Don’t “poke” newly sentient robots. They hate that shit.


2. Don’t Panic

If you’ve been reading your Wired magazine (and really, who hasn’t?), you know that the AI revolution is already upon us and might not be so bad after all. There’s a very good chance that all those Skynet minions will just keep going about their business. No nuclear warfare necessary.

Still, it’s possible that all those animatronic doo-dads in Disneyland’s “it’s a small world” ride might get some bright ideas and start an uprising, so remain prepared. However, it’s not required that you run screaming from your Roomba...

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