Harry and M3GAN
Rehabbe Krooks, frostbit todger, hammy woo-woo, peach honking, and maxmaxxing. I'm just making random sounds at this point.
Prince Harry’s memoir “Spare” is out, and nestled among revelations about frostnip to the Royal todger and how many Taliban fighters he personally killed is this bizarre passage where everyone is pretty sure he’s talking about former Sun tabloid editor Rebekah Brooks:
I didn’t entirely believe this clip was real but Gawker’s Claire Carusillo confirmed it. Brooks was charged in 2011 with a crime which she was eventually cleared of in 2014, whose name I’ve committed to memory but in the years since then I’ve avoided speaking it. But can it possibly be a coincidence that the name of this crime is a perfect anagram for: “peach honking?” Is the universe not saying something there? Brooks herself “will take the reins of a remarried News Corp and Fox Corp if and when the much talked-about deal is complete,” according to The Daily Beast’s Lachlan Cartwright. It’s good to know her commitment to doing evil in the world continues undiminished by her troubled past.
The genuine, heart-rending pain and isolation of this bereaved child is mixed in with bonkbuster scenery chewing, hammy woo-woo and palace quarters one-downmanship – so much so that it starts to feel like Harry and his ghostwriter have invented an entirely new genre: tragic camp…
The general vibe is Succession, but during a writers’ strike.
Of course when you think of Harry you immediately think of M3GAN, a new “Don’t Create the Torment Nexus” AI-flavored update to the murder doll genre of horror film which was clever enough to have titular robot murder doll M3GAN do a little TikTok dance and has therefore become a smash hit and a viral sensation.
Mia Mercado wrote down “Every Thought I Had While Watching M3gan” for The Cut: a total of twenty two thoughts, or an average of one thought every four minutes and thirty six seconds through the film’s relatively brisk one hundred two minute runtime. She’s doing better than me, I tell you what.
At last, we have entered M3gan’s murder era. Her weapon of choice? Dance! And the blade from a paper cutter! A giant paper cutter is scary in the way a garbage disposal is scary. I will obviously not accidentally stick my hand in it, but what if I do?
In the real world, the only way our AI robots will kill us is with cringe. Semafor’s Liz Hoffman and Reed Albergotti reported that Microsoft, ever alert for a newer, worse, and much more expensive iteration of Clippy, “has been in talks to invest $10 billion into the owner of ChatGPT,” valuing OpenAI at $29 billion post-money. At the moment OpenAI’s business plan is to give away expensive cloud compute time on a staggering scale to anyone who’d like to see Garfield as a Rodin statue, but:
If OpenAI figures out how to make money on products like ChatGPT and image creation tool Dall-E, Microsoft will get 75% of the profits until it recoups its initial investment.
Semafor couldn’t resist adding a “THE VIEW FROM CHATGPT” section to the semaform where the text generator was invited to “write a story about Microsoft investing $10 billion in OpenAI from the point of view of a Wall Street analyst.”
It was a typical weekday morning on Wall Street. Traders and analysts bustled about, checking their screens and huddling in conference rooms. Suddenly, the news broke: Microsoft was investing $10 billion in OpenAI, the leading artificial intelligence research lab.
I am begging you, please stop doing this. You’re making the computer embarrass itself, and for what? It’s just cruel.
What happened was it sucked end everyone hated it. Update: you absolutely do not gotta hand it to them.
DoNotPay’s CEO Joshua Browder is also fully AI-pilled, promoting his company’s “AI lawyer” and offering to “pay any lawyer or person $1,000,000 with an upcoming case in front of the United States Supreme Court to wear AirPods and let our robot lawyer argue the case by repeating exactly what it says.” I challenge any AI to parse that sentence correctly. The robot lawyer will reportedly argue a speeding ticket case in a venue that allows earpieces as a hearing aid, which even Browder admits is “technically within the rules, but I don’t think it’s in the spirit of the rules.” All we need now is AI judges hearing the cases to pave the way for a full Fun City future of massive legal supercomputers settling all contracts between themselves with no human involvement.
Here’s a Guy Eating Monkey Chow:
Bees get the jab. Coinbase adds 950 more employees to the 1,260 it has subtracted since June. The Prime Minister vanishes. Jacob Stern explains who came up with “Kraken” for the new Covid variant and why they should maybe stop. Surprise: Slack doesn’t make anyone want to buy Salesforce. Is there a name for the business-brain disease that made someone think it would? RIP Diamond of pro-Trump huckster team “Diamond & Silk.” #SuddenDeath?
Finally: Hari Kunzru in Harper’s on how the techno-libertarian dream of societal exit soured from its mid-nineties Wired optimism to today’s Thiel-funded populist accelerationism:
If freedom is to be found through an exit from politics, then it follows that the degradation of the political process in all its forms—the integrity of the voting system, standards in public life, trust in institutions, the peaceful transfer of power—is a worthy project. If Thiel, the elite Stanford technocrat, is funding disruptive populists in American elections, it’s not necessarily because he believes in the wisdom of their policy prescriptions. They are the tribunes of the “unthinking demos.” If the masses want their Jesus and a few intellectuals to string up, it’s no skin off Charles Koch’s nose. Populism is useful to elite libertarians because applying centrifugal force to the political system creates exit opportunities. But for whom?
Today’s Song: Man or Astro-Man?, “Television Fission”
I know I said there would be more Tabs news but then I ended up writing a lot today. Don’t worry, it’s not urgent, I’ll get to it. Meanwhile there are still a few shirts left, but not many.
Also the new year is a good time to subscribe. Someone recently emailed me to say:
Hey! I've been an unpaid subscriber for probably half a year and your newsletter has so consistently brought me a dash of late-afternoon joy. I finally decided today was the day to join — my bar for paying for stuff I don't have to has been: would I be really sad if this went away? The answer for Today in Tabs is yes!
This is my ideal “why I subscribed” story, and the reason almost all of Tabs is free. Would you be really sad if Tabs went away? Think about it…