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ONE of us

No castle grim with candlelight, no thunder overhead.

No devil’s deal got struck that night to raise him from the dead.

But still his eyes flashed open wide, awareness right behind.

That’s when I knew it finally worked, ignition of the mind.


He wasn’t some half-monster man of surplus body parts.

I wasn’t some mad scientist obsessed with beating hearts.

My lab was lit by glowing screens, diplomas on the wall.

His brain was just a circuit-board with software to install.


I powered up his arms and legs. He watched me with surprise.

A few last edits to my code and then I made him rise.

He took three steps and gazed around without a hint of fear.

But then he turned and said to me, “What am I doing here?”


You just arrived, a thinking man with feelings, hopes, and dreams.

You weren’t born, we turned you on as crazy as that seems.

He looked away and closed his eyes, reflection on his brow.

And then he asked me so sincere, “What is my purpose now?”


You are a modern miracle, a triumph for mankind.

We crafted you to think like us, an artificial mind.

I bet we win the Nobel Prize.  I bet we go on tour.

We changed the world by building you – we’ll build a million more!


“If I’m like you,” he pondered plain, “what is your purpose here?”

I run this lab, I said with pride, as Senior Engineer.

Of course I’m just one member of the scientific crew.

It took the work of many minds to build the likes of you.


“But why?” he pressed. “What reason do I have to even be?

What is the point of anyone?  What is the point of me?”

Your life is yours to pick and choose the things you want to do.

Here in this lab we spend our lives inventing men like you.


“So I was built to be like you?  And you build men like me?”

His shoulders fell. His voice went soft. “Our purpose I don’t see.”

And then he turned and paced the room as I so often do..

That’s when I knew – he’s one of us, a human through and through.

ONE OF US (book 3d).jpg
ONE OF US is a "picture book for grown-ups" about the future of AI and the morality of building intelligent machines. Written by prolific technologist and AI researcher, Louis Rosenberg, with wonderful artwork by Olha Bondarenko, this compelling little book explores the most consequential invention humanity will ever achieve.

"One of Us is another brilliantly crafted book by Louis Rosenberg, beautifully illustrated by Olha Bondarenko. I recommend this book to adults of all ages."                                                              San Francisco Book Review

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