L. O. V. E.

Year 2095 AD. Technology, including Artificial Intelligence, has risen by leaps and bounds. Each household has its own robot to help with the chores. Steffi, a literature student, also has her own robot- Robo, which often helps her in doing college projects, cleaning dishes etc. along with her mother.

Robo could answer any question under the sun. Feed the question, and answer would be there on its screen in just a fraction of seconds!

But one fateful day, it had to be vice-versa. Steffi was making her project on “Jane Eyre”. She fed the entire novel’s content inside the motherboard of the robot so that she could be helped with making of the project. Robo came across the word “LOVE”, an unfamiliar word for this machine with AI. For they don’t have emotions, do they?

Robo, for the first time in Steffi’s life, enquired of her and uttered in its heavy, machine-like voice, “What is L. O. V. E.?”

Steffi was dumbfounded. She paused for a while, pondering over the question. For it had to be a humongous task to explain to a heartless emotionless being, what the four-lettered word meant. She started thinking of instances of love.

She took Robo outside in the garden and thought of demonstrating it with some live examples. There was a young couple on the bench, sitting and kissing each other. “Is that love?” she thought. “Nah! This is sheer lust.”

Then she came across a temple, where a man was praying and seeking God’s blessings. “Is this divine love?” she thought. “Nah! This is only asking God for something or the other. It’s not showing gratitude to the Almighty for giving us a beautiful life to live.” This was also not love. Then how to explain it to Robo?

It was a moment of great despair for Steffi until she decided to return home and ponder over the question. As such, it had started drizzling anyways. Robo and she needed to rush into their home. She was shivering when they returned. She felt cold and cough really badly. Steffi’s mother came to her, infuriated for not taking her cold and fever medication on time. Her anger was LOVE. Her fear was LOVE. This relation was LOVE. Everything about a mother was LOVE. It must be for all, as it pleases our souls, she assumed.

Steffi finally comprehended the meaning of love and explained it to Robo, who seeing her mother shouting at her angrily, realized the meaning of the same. Was Steffi really correct in calling the AI machine a heartless one?

Steffi Bhateja

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