Spirit in the Machine

Spirit in the Machine 2I recently learned of an amazing little miracle that has been taking place behind the scenes as it where for quite a while now. I know many would call this a coincidence or even less than that however in my opinion this is a really inspirational situation.

For over 5 years now those of us who use apple products have been using Siri. For those who don’t know Siri is the name of the voice activated digital assistant that is part of the core software of many apple devices. It’s like s science fiction, you press a small button and say “where can I get coffee?” Or “is it going to rain today?” Or even “what time does the movie starring?” And in a flash Siri not only tells you what you asked but gives you directions from wherever you happen to be at that moment and even gets you alternate locations and directions to those alternates. It’s amazing. I’m sure you’re thinking that this is an odd article but trust me I’m not talking about Siri when I say small miracles. While this is pretty neat it’s nothing in my opinion compared to what I found out.

For over 5 years later millions of people have been using this software for so many normal and unremarkable things but what never crossed my mind before, was the fact that people also use this software for some not so normal or unremarkable things. While some people are asking for directions to restaurants or to friend’s houses or special events some were asking Siri for directions to abortion clinics. Not really a light hearted question to ask one’s phone and it definitely paints a very dark picture.

Here is the part that I find to be a miracle, since the beginning, when asked for abortion clinics the Siri software would instead give results for adoption centers. Now I realize man people think this is silly maybe even stupid but I think we have to really allow this subtle thing sink in. The leading supplier of consumer voice activated digital assistant software, with over a billion user’s world wide has been putting devices in people’s hands and while Apple the makers of this software as well as the devices that use it, say it was a bug they are looking into; for five years now those looking to abort their babies, trying to locate a place to do just that were instead given results about adoption. Surely some of these people found other means of carrying out their purpose but think of how many people having received those results changed their minds, indeed how many children may be here with us today because of this “bug”.

To me this so called bug seems to be an oddly specific one. The two terms aren’t really related in anyway that a computer really uses to establish relationships between different data. Computers, despite what we keep hearing don’t actually work like human brains. Even if the terms rhymed a computer wouldn’t know that. A computers method of grouping information deals with defined perimeters. In other words, a programmer has to tell the computer via code that if it encounters a specific word such as “red” to automatically include results that the programmer tells the software is reliving. Basically unless two terms contain the same words a computer can’t tell that they have anything in common unless told. Boiled down in this instance I find the suggestion that this is a bug to be highly unlikely.

So what are the alternatives? The most obvious is that this was done on purpose. Either a programmer or team or even the company as a whole has decided to take this stand agains abortion and even in the face of public criticism by a populous who wants to slander anyone who fights for rights or morals that make their lives less convenient, they stood firm. The other possibility is that it really is a bug or at least from the perspective of the developers trying to get rid of “bug” that God put in to the code.

In either case I find this whole thing to be very interesting and in a world where we are so often being told about all the new horrible things that technology is making available or easier to get, the endless river of smut and pornography that it is everywhere and the treat of hackers and various cyber threats that there be something so glorious makes me smile. Be it a persona group a company or even a brace computer glitch, something or someone is holding up the Bible and in such a gentle and understated way, championing the cause.

Glory to God in any case. And thank God for these miracles.

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