Friday, December 9, 2016

THE POKER PARADOX

Science fiction can be fun as well as thought provoking. Consider poker on the Enterprise D. 

On one side of the table you have Troi: whose job on board is to read minds, Data: a walking talking supercomputer with perfect recall who cannot help but count cards, and Geordi: who sees with a visor in wavelengths well beyond human norms. I'm guessing the pigments on each card appear to him as if they were printed on glass. He can see micro-fissures in a faulty bulkhead for goodness sake. When Jargon La Forge receives the full spectrum of data absorbed through his visual implants he not only knows what you are holding, but can see the next card in the deck.

On the other side of the table you have what passes for normal people in the 24th Century, people willing to play poker with freaks that clearly have advantages. And what are they playing for, anyway? I thought money was a quaint idea abandoned by these enlightened cosmic travelers.

And here's some interesting musings on the future of the human race by an SF fan.

(Truthdig.com interview)

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