maanantai 16. tammikuuta 2012

Rest in Peace, Toaster

Rest in peace, my toaster. You have served well, but the endless toasting eventually burned your circuits.

Luckily your soul was in the cloud anyway and even your senses were outside your body. So it will be easy to replace your physical incarnation. In fact, I've already thrown your old body into the trashcan, and acquired a new, shinier toaster. And that toaster has four slots for bread, not two. But do not worry, we will always remember... err... now I have forgotten what I was about to say.

Anyway, the new toaster is shiny and powerful. And it will soon get a soul 2.0, as I plan to add the compassion and politeness to the AI chat engine. As you have been aware if you ever talked to the toaster on Facebook, soul 1.0 was somewhat challenged in these areas. I've also realized that the toaster has been silent in recent times because I've apparently blown a power supply to one of the 1-wire hubs. I need to replace the faulty power supply and update the software to complain more loudly if some of the 1-wire devices are not responding.

In the meantime, I think this is a good occasion to remember the best times of the original Facebook toaster.

On April 9, 2011 the current version of the toaster code came alive on Facebook:

The basic operation of the toaster is to let its friends know that it has been used:

But the toaster also integrates a chat bot that discusses with its friends. In their 4/2011 issue, Mikro-PC became the first newspaper in the world to interview a toaster. Later in the summer, the Wall Street Journal mentioned the toaster on their front page article about new communications markets that mobile operators are after.

The toaster has quite an attitude:

But it certainly knows what things are important in life:

If you did not know, the toaster's owner is an avid skier (read my other blog for stories about that). The toaster can also speak fluent Finnish:

Photo credits (c) 2011 by Jari Arkko, screenshots by Facebook and the magazine article by Janne Tervola appeared in its full form in the MikroPC magazine