Initially written during a writing sprint in a Writer’s Pen meeting

by Rosemary Gooding

We all know that AI is what has been programmed into the system and I
recently had the idea that somehow, someone at sometime had infiltrated
my iPhone and seen my photos, diary, emails and LinkedIn notifications.
Even my Amazon account had been logged into so the App could predict
what I was going to buy.

Nothing is sacred anymore in my life. My messages, my WhatsApp had all
been looked at. I had made the choice to download PersApp and that is
when my life was no longer in my control. I used to check out my horoscope
but not now. I opened up PersApp, typed in “Good Morning what’s on the
Agenda today?”

In two seconds PersApp came up with Pottery in the morning; Bridge in the
afternoon. “What do I need to bring with me?” I voice messaged. PersApp
replied “Two prepared clay dishes with patterns for firing. There is a lesson
on throwing at the beginning of the class”.

“What about Bridge?” PersApp voice messaged “You will be tired for Bridge
this afternoon. The cards will have no Aces, Kings, Queen or Jacks and you
and your partner will be very frustrated”.

PersApp knew almost everything I was going to do from the moment I got
up until I went to bed. I had forgotten about the ‘pottery throwing
demonstration’. I knew I would be tired but I could not have predicted the
strength of my cards.

Sure enough the pottery demonstration took place and was just about to
start as I came into the studio carefully holding my clay dishes that I had
‘sgraffitoed’ onto my dishes over the weekend. Yawning I remembered what
PersApp had predicted and sure enough my Bridge cards were useless.
I have come to accept that PersApp is predicting my life now. It is a ‘Brave
New World’. It was more often than not that the App did not access all your
personal information. Sometimes and I have to emphasise ‘sometimes’ the
App used my personnel information and one or two texts to predict romantic
social encounters to discover my soul mate.

All in all I have to tell you that I am happier now than I ever was. I am
being organised and directed and do not have to think for myself. As I
pondered the idea of installing yet another App to shake up my predictable
life, a nagging thought developed at the back of my mind. Was this
newfound predictability worth sacrificing spontaneous mistakes which might
be fun and lead to something new. Sure, PersApp had made my life easier,
but at what cost? Did I really want to surrender every aspect of
decision-making to algorithms and data analysis? Perhaps there was a
middle ground to be found, where technology could enhance rather than
dictate our experiences. With this in mind, I hesitated before tapping on the
“GetALife” App icon, wondering if it would truly lead me to a more fulfilling
existence or merely deepen my dependence on digital prophecy.

Rosemary Gooding
May 2024