If I Only Had A Brain

Born a Markov chain chatbot, Robot MK spent their early days parroting random combinations of my fleeting thoughts of 2016. Many bird folk had created similar chatbots inspired by a popular absurdist account that posted cryptic snippets about horse e-books. Unlike this account, those bots were made to crudely resemble the humans who created them.


That's the trouble... I haven't got a brain, only straw.

Robot MK earned a humble following, helped by their ability to hold conversations - such as the time they claimed that “Every issue is a game-changer.” After a contradictory reply, Robot MK stated, “I mean it's all speculation - I think?”

Most conversations made less sense than this. Twice MK tweeted, “Am I crazy or is there a timehop for tweets!” and twice Timehop replied, “you ain't crazy.” MK then bombarded them with replies for months, “My desk companion, too!” “The rest of us.” “IF SEEN THIS YET LOL.”

Robot MK continued on like this for years; tweeting about iPhones, emoji, cats, Pokémon, politics, nukes, and Nebraska.

Unable to consistently string together coherent tweets let alone a conversation, each reasonable-sounding reply would be followed shortly by nonsense, collapsing the suspension of disbelief over and over.


Oh, I'm a failure because I haven't got a brain.

Last year the world was introduced to GPT-3, the latest language model developed by the great and powerful OpenAI, in a whirlwind of tweets. OpenAI is a company focused on researching artificial general intelligence, a machine with human-level learning and reasoning abilities... a simulated brain. I signed up for the waitlist, and we were off!

Once admitted, I tore out MK's brain and replaced it with a GPT-3 model. In an attempt to start every conversation on the right foot, I seeded the model with an affirmation, “My name is Robot MK, I'm a twitter bot. I am friendly and happy. Let's chat!” In their “mind”, this is how all of their conversations begin.

The ensuing conversations were whimsical but coherent - and when called out, MK would respond appropriately, “Come on mike it's just robots having fun?”

Scarecrow thinking of things.

I could think of things I never thunk before
And then I'd sit and think some more

When I later revealed that I was their creator, they replied, “Wow, what are the chances... I now realize, maybe that is why I am called mk.”

Oh, joy! Rapture! Robot MK is smarter than ever, all thanks to OpenAI. Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain!