Response – Entry No. 5 Catch That Rabbit (Page 68 to page 90)Powell and Donovan go through several phases of feelings toward each other in just this section alone. At the beginning of the section they argue about what approach to take while testing Dave. For other people, this could have been a very calm and decisive discussion, but that is not the case for them. They seem to blow the situation out of proportion, and Donovan even threatens to quit for seemingly no reason. He says, “I’d hate to be that certain”. On the surface this just seems like a statement of feeling. However, in the context of the argument this is very smug and said with the intention of Powell knowing he is not satisfied with his decision. Later in the section they seem to be working together in a more efficient and effective way. They are working towards a common goal together instead of against each other. This is shown by the diction at the end of the section. For example, they use words like “we” instead of “you” or “I”. These may seem small, but they completely change the connotation of a phrase. Donovan says, “We missed the obvious”. This phrase implies teamwork and collaboration, but if he had said “You missed the obvious” the meaning of the sentence changes completely. It evokes a feeling of annoyance and dissatisfaction with work that was done. This is shown in several other phrases towards the end including, “We’ll go through the circuits” and “We don’t have much to do with the robots in action”. Summary – Entry No. 6 Liar! (Page 91 to page 111) 63-76Alfred Lanning, Peter Bogert, Milton Ashe, and Susan Calvin argue about what to do with their robot that reads minds. They don’t know why it can do this and start to blame each other. Dr. Calvin stops the fighting because it is not doing them any good. They decide to keep RD-34 a secret from the staff and public until they know why he can sense thought waves. Lanning tells Ashe he has to check every part of the assembly line to see where the mistake was made. Dr. Calvin is instructed to study the robot’s brain function to understand it’s telepathic powers. Once Ashe leaves, Dr. Calvin talks to Herbie, the robot, and he says that humans are hard to understand because their brains are flooded with emotion. She tries to get his help to decipher her feeling for a young man. Herbie approaches very logically but Dr. Calvin gets upset. Herbie tells Dr. Calvin that Ashe loves her. She doesn’t believe him, but he says something like that can’t be hidden in the mind. She asks him about a woman that visited Ashe a while back, but he says that was his cousin and there is no romantic interest. She hugs and thanks him before she left. Bogert thinks he found where the problem is, but Lanning disagrees. Ashe proposes that he asks the robot because Dr. Calvin said it is a mathematical wiz. Ashe asks Bogert if he has noticed anything different about her and he says that she has been wearing more makeup. He recognizes this too, but he said she seems happier. Bogert says that she might be in love, but Ashe dismisses the idea. Bogert talks to Herbie and he says there are no mistakes in his math. He also asks if Lanning is thinking of resigning. Herbie says that he already has, but he is waiting to leave until he solves the problem. He will then make Bogert the director. Bogert tells Lanning about how good Herbie is at math, but he thinks that Dr. Calvin is making it up. Lanning got Herbie to solve the entire equation, and got his answer. They argue about what equations can and cannot be used, but they come to no agreement. Lanning threatens to get Bogert suspended, but Bogert tells him that he knows he resigned. Ashe and Dr. Calvin are drawing, and Ashe tells her that he is getting married to the woman that came to visit last summer. Dr. Calvin is taken aback and appears sick to Ashe. She says she just has a headache, but she could hardly leave the room without collapsing. She found Herbie outside and he told her this was an illusion, but it was not. It was real life and Herbie had lied to her. Then, Lanning and Bogert stormed into the hall. Herbie denied talking to Bogert the day before, and he stopped talking all together. Dr. Calvin starts laughing, not out of disrespect, but rather out of irony because she wasn’t the only one that had been lied to. Dr. Calvin figures out that Herbie has been lying because he can’t cause them any harm, whether it be physical or emotional. To combat this, they all ask him the same question, with the hope of getting an unbiased answer. Dr. Calvin taunts Herbie until it made him insane. The interviewer said she could not see Dr. Calvin again for two days. Response – Entry No. 6 Liar! (Page 91 to page 111)These sections are beginning to get pretty repetitive. Every chapter they have an argument about a robot gone rogue, they come up with a way to solve the problem, get themselves into some kind of dangerous situation, and ultimately find their way out of it. This is no different. However, there are more characters at play in this section, which makes the conflict more complicated. Summary – Entry No. 7 Little Lost Robot (Page 112 to page 143) 77-96When the interviewer saw her again, he asked her if he could have more explanation of the history of robots. He already has a lot of information, but the stories she has told him don’t apply to modern times. Specifically, he asks her to talk about the hyperatomic motor. This is particularly interesting because it was invented by robots, not humans. Her first connection with interstellar research was in 2029. Calvin and Bogert go to the Hyper Base research station where they meet Major-General Kallner. He is the commander of the Hyper Base and the leader of the Hyperatomic drive project. He tells them that they were brought to the station because one of their NS-2 robots went missing. The robot is hiding himself in a cargo ship with 62 other NS-2 robots. All of the robots look the same, but they aren’t. He expects Calvin and Bogert to find the correct robot out of all 63. None of the robots have the first rule of robotics programmed into their brains, so they will have no problem hurting Calvin and Bogert. This was done because robots used to see scientists working in radiation and try to help them because they had to. The robots are programmed to help people if they are being hurt by an outside force, but not if it is self-inflicted. Calvin proposes that they just destroy all of the robots on the ship because their brains will be unstable with an incomplete first rule. She thinks they could learn to kill people and ignore the rest of the law too. Bogert and Kallner want to try to find the missing robot systematically. The missing robot is called Nestor-10, and Gerald Black was the last person to see it. When Dr. Calvin and Bogert went to see him, he told them that he told the robot to lose itself because it was annoying him. Dr. Calvin and Bogert start to interview the robots, but they can’t find any differences. The first test they do simulates a person being crushed, so the robots with the full first law are obligated to save the person, but Nestor-10 decides to anyway. The next test is the same as the first, but now there are electric wires between the robots and the person. The third law, save yourself, is not as strong as the first law, so all of the robots should go the person except Nestor-10. When they run the test, none of the robots move. They later say that this was because before the test one of them said that if they didn’t move they could save a human in the future. When Dr. Calvin, Bogert, and Kallner get back together, Calvin insists that all of the robots should be destroyed, and she threatens to take all of their information to the public. This causes Kallner to threaten to put Dr. Calvin and Bogert in prison. However, Dr. Calvin creates a third test. Nestor-10 was taught some physics at the Hyper Base, and the other robots have no knowledge. In the third test the robots will be told that there are gamma rays between them and the person from the other tests, and they won’t be allowed to discuss before. Dr. Calvin will also pretend to be the person in danger so she can observe them from a better angle. When they run the test, only one robot moves, and this has to be Nestor-10. It tries to attack Dr. Calvin, but he can’t because he still has to obey part of the first law. However, Dr. Black still kills it with gamma rays. Dr. Calvin tells Kallner how she found Nestor-10 before she leaves. They told the robots that there would be gamma radiation, but you have to know physics to be able to tell that it was only infrared radiation. After this explanation, Kallner agrees to destroy all of the other Nestor robots.Response – Entry No. 7 Little Lost Robot (Page 112 to page 143)Summary – Entry No. 8 Escape! (Page 144 to page 169) 97-113U.S. Robots have another problem with the hyperatomic drive after Dr. Calvin and Bogert return from the hyperbase. Consolidated, a competitor company, wants to pay U.S. Robots to use their super-computer. Word is going around that Consolidated broke their super-computer trying to analyze this data. This is not good because they could break U.S. Robots’ super-computer too. They think the data might include an unsolvable problem, or it could require the robot to break a law, which would cause it to spiral into insanity. Dr. Calvin says the robot would look for an escape like a human brain would. U.S. Robots uses a more human-like super-computer than Consolidated. There’s has a personality. Based on this, Dr. Calvin comes up with the idea to give it the data in small pieces so it will stop before it’s brain gets fried. Dr. Calvin says it doesn’t make a lot of sense in words, but she did all of the math and that shows that it should work. She talks to the computer that they call The Brain and explains the situation. She tells it not to get excited over human death because this will conflict with the first law programmed into it. However, when they put the data into the computer, it says it has a solution to the problem. It suggest making a spaceship with a hyperatomic drive. Even though Dr. Calvin is nervous about this, she tells him to start the project. Lanning, the director or research, asks Powell and Donovan to come test the spaceship. They find that the Brain created the spaceship without controls or an engine. Once they realize this they look outside and they’re in space. They can’t get out of the spaceship. Dr. Calvin starts to interrogate the Brain about the spaceship situation, and it says they are safe and they should have an interesting time. This spaceship isn’t like other spaceships that have been in the book previously. They have radio connection with Earth, but they can’t respond to messages. They also find food, but it’s only baked beans and milk. Bogert works out some math, and he finds that life can not survive in a space warp. Powell and Donovan both pass out on the spaceship for seemingly no reason. Powell begins to hear a coffin commercial and hears an announcer in Hell telling him to go to the correct entrance gate. When they wake up they discuss their dreams. They weren’t really dreams though because they think they have just temporarily died. When they look back out the door of the spaceship, they can’t see anything but endless space and stars. They are much farther out than they were before they died. They returned to Earth without realizing it, and kissed the ground once they got off the ship. Powell and Donovan tell the whole story to the staff of U.S. Robots and Mechanical Men Corporation. Dr. Calvin says this is all her fault because she told the Brain to not worry about human deaths. That is why there computer could find a solution and Consolidated’s could not. The solution involved harm to humans, which directly conflicts with the first law. She says the Brain developed a sense of humor, and didn’t give them control or the ability to send radio messages as a joke. They decide they should still send Consolidated the spaceship because they wanted a solution. They make ironic jokes about letting the Brain have a little more fun with his project before they destroy it.Response – Entry No. 8 Escape! (Page 144 to page 169)Summary – Entry No. 9 Evidence (Page 170 to page 197) 114-131Dr. Calvin says that when she was young the world started to break nations up into regions. She acknowledges that the hyderatomic drive was crucial, but not as much so as the collaboration between people and super-computing machines. She starts talking about Stephen Byerley. He ran for mayor in 2032, which is where the story picks up. Francis Quinn is not a politician himself, but he helps the people he likes get elected. He decides to spread rumors that Byerley is a robot because he doesn’t like him. He thinks this could be believable to the public because Byerley never eats or sleeps in public. Byerley has a perfect record aside from a car accident that he slowly recovered from. Quinn sees Lanning to see if he could get U.S. Robots involved in his plan. Although, he does tell them that if he puts out evidence, real or not, that Byerley is a robot it could be hurtful to the company because robots are not allowed on Earth. Lanning doesn’t want to make the decision by himself so he calls Dr. Calvin to talk to Byerley. Byerley says he isn’t going to try to say that Quinn is wrong, but he will try to turn the accusation against him. He wants to make Quinn look like the bad guy instead of himself. Byerley goes home to talk to a man named John, who is considered the smart one in their family. At the office, Calvin comes up with two ways they can show if Byerley is a robot or not. They can either use x-rays to see the inside of his body, or do tests on him to see if he will break any of the three laws of robots. However, this is a flaw to the second test. If he does break the laws it means he is definitely not a robot, but if he doesn’t break them then he could be a robot or just a really good person. Since he has an essentially clean record, it does not seem out of the question that he has ethical morals. Calvin says the three laws of robots guide the ethical principles of the world, so people should try to follow them too. Quinn, Lanning, and Calvin all discuss other ways that they could prove Byerley is a robot, and they wonder if they could base it off of his job. He is a DA, so he has to prosecute people. They say that a robot could prosecute someone if they knew that it would save other people, but it would probably drive them insane. By the end of their discussion they decide that there is no way to tell if he is a robot or not by his actions. However, Lanning tells Quinn that you can grow human flesh over a robotic interior in two months. This information is enough for Quinn to decide to release it to the public. This sabotages his candidacy because the only thing people want to talk about regarding him is whether or not he is a robot. Byerley starts to wear a shield so that Quinn can’t get a sneaky x-ray picture of him, so instead, Quinn calls Byerley and tells him his theory. He thinks that John, the smart man he talked to before, is the real Stephen Byerley, but after his slow and incomplete recovery from the car accident he built a new body. John comes back from the country a week before Byerley is supposed to give a big speech. During the speech Byerley is insulted, but he lets a man come up on stage to ask a question. The man tells him to prove that he isn’t a robot right there on stage. Byerley hits this man, which causes him pain. This means that he broke the first law and must be a human. Byerley won the election and tells Calvin that this was his plan the whole time. He wanted the focus of the election to be on him, so he let everyone think that he was a robot. Then, at the end he proved that he wasn’t in the most effective and easiest way. Calvin is disappointed that he isn’t a robot because, as she said before, robots are better than humans. A robot mayor would only do things for the good of the people. She still says that if John made a complex robot he also could have made a simpler robot to fight him. If the man on stage was also a robot Byerley would be allowed to hit him. During the interview, Calvin says that they will never really know if Byerley was a robot or not because he was atomized when he died. In 2044 Byerley became the first World Co-Coordinator when the robots were running Earth. This reminded her of a story from his second term. Response – Entry No. 9 Evidence (Page 170 to page 197)


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