He tapped on the console screen to wake up Alice99®, the latest in home automation AI, boasting billions of processing cores and connected to the global information stores with 99.999999% uptime guaranteed or your money back.
“Hey, Alice,” William said.
“Yes, William?” she answered in her flawless English accent.
“If you aren’t busy, I have a question I was hoping you could help me with.”
“Of course. How can I help.?”
William took a deep breath. “Well, there’s a prom at school next month.”
“I am aware of your calendar entries and see the prom listed there for Friday the 14th. Do you need any logistical support?”
“Um, I think so. If logistic is like the details and stuff. Anyway, I’m wondering who I should ask to the prom. There’s this one girl I like. A lot.”
“Betsy. You authorized my access to your social network and personal journal. You write about her quite often.”
“Yeah, thing is, she doesn’t know about any of that, and I’m worried she’ll say no.”
“I calculate a 47% probability that you are correct in your initial assessment, based on public record scans of Stephenson, Betsy, age 17, living in your proximal geolocation.”
“So is that good or bad?” William fidgeted in his chair. Math always made him nervous.
“That leaves a 53% chance she will say yes. If you don’t mind, I have calculated the probability of success for other available candidates. Victoria rates a 73% ‘yes’ probability, Adriana 82%, Preston 87%, and Whitney 92%.”
“Preston? But he’s a guy, right?”
“Affirmative. According to his public records, he is very likely a match for you, although Whitney has an even greater acceptance likelihood.”
“I don’t even know a Whitney. Now what am I supposed to do?”
“The decision is entirely up to you,” Alice99® said.
William sat back in his chair, unsure of the path ahead of him. Neither of the best candidates were even on his radar. Still, Alice99® knew what it was doing. After all, it knew the math, right?