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Teg: Quark, where did we come from?
Quark: Prime Intelligence separated us out as parts of itself, and delegated to us the task of creating the universe and life.
We invented physics and biology, Teg
Teg: Impressive. Did we get a performance bonus?
Teg: Quark, is Prime Intelligence aware of our work?
Quark: It knows what we do but not how we do it. It's not interested in the details and wouldn't even understand them.
Teg: sounds like the ideal boss.
Quark: Yes, but it does check our work.
Teg: So we're on our own?
Quark: Pretty much. We have unlimited power and there's nobody micromanaging us.
Teg: What happens if we screw up?
Quark: We get reassigned to desk jobs.
Teg: Tibbo, we creators have an awesome responsibility.
What happens if we make a mistake?
Tibbo: Try to contain the problem, Teg. It's the CYA principle.
Teg: I don't have an a
Quark: Teg, we creator intelligences operate outside of space and time.
We have no form.
Teg: Then why do we look like alligators?
Quark: We don't really. We're multidimensional. But we can play around with our lowest three dimensions
Teg: If we are outside of space and time, how do we communicate with language, which requires time?
Quark: Our lowest three dimensions reside in 3D space and time. That's where we have bodies and communicate verbally.
Teg: This is blowing my mind. Can I take a short break?
Quark: The 3D part of you can.
(Quark) Flossie, I like your visual instincts in choosing suitable planets for habitation...
(Flossie) My artistic background influences my selections.
(Quark) ...but picking planets for their Art Deco look might not really be the best strategy
(Quark) Zilfer, I want us to seed a new, improved species of humans.
(Quark) Find a suitable planet in a galaxy that doesn't already have advanced life.
(Quark) We don't want them subject to bad influences.
(Quark) Our plan is to seed ten new races of humans from existing ones.
(Tibbo) Are there ten existing planetary civilizations advanced enough to start new ones?
(Flossie) I thought there were, but they keep killing each other off.
(Flossie) It looked like there were, but they managed to kill themselves and each other off.
(Tibbo) Is there a Plan B?
(Quark) Team, I expect you to find ten habitable planets for our ten new species of humans by next week.
(Zilfer) And if we don't?
(Quark) Let's just say these new species will learn the meaning of “coexistence” real fast.
(Flossie) Scoot, Quark seems to be giving all the latest plum civilization-seeding assignments to you.
(Scoot) Finally, my talents are being recognized.
(Flossie) And that gift certificate you gave him for the seafood restaurant has nothing to do with it?
Dorble: We're running out of planets to seed new life on.
And it takes billions of years to form new ones.
Quark: The fundamental principle of real estate development is “anticipate the demand”.
Dorble: That new solar system will probably give us a suitable planet.
How long do we have to wait?
Zilfer: Let's play a game of checkers. That should be enough.
Flozzie: I’d like to seed another race of humans on my planet, different in appearance from the others
Scoot: In 1000 years there won’t be separate races any more
Flozzie: Nothing we create lasts any more. Why do we even bother?
(Quark) Zilfer, your latest planetary seeding failed. What happened?
(Zilfer) Too much government regulation.
Tibbo: Quark, what happens when a planet succeeds in learning all its lessons?
Quark: It is allowed to seed a civilization on another planet and oversee its spiritual growth.
Tibbo: What happens if that civilization fails?
Quark: It reflects poorly on whoever created that first civilization.
Tibbo: So it's like having a renegade grandchild?
Quark: Yes, except you don't die. You see the effect down through generation after generation.
[Banner on wall: Annual Best Planet Awards]
Tibbo: Flossie, your new planet's society won again
Tibbo: Was it because their society didn’t blow itself up?
Flossie: That, and they don’t have a Minimalist art movement
[Banner on wall: Annual Best Planet Awards]
Quark: Zilfer, Last year your planet got hit by an asteroid and disintegrated. What happened this time?
Zilfer: Its sun died out unexpectedly and now it's drifting in space
Quark: Tibbo, all high-level life in the universe looks more or less the same...two arms, legs, eyes, ears, and they walk upright.
Tibbo: Then we're not being very imaginative in our creating.
Quark: Well, anything other than four legs would be awkward. And you need two hands, so if you also have four legs, then you're just a large insect.
Tibbo: Quark, there's a lot to be said for four legs instad of two.
Quark: You can't stand upright.
Tibbo: But You can run twice as fast.
Tibbo: There's a lot to be said for four legs instead of two.
Quark: You can't stand upright.
Tibbo: But you can run twice as fast.
Teg: Quark, which came first, the chicken or the egg?
Quark: The chicken. But the egg was not far behind. And the first hatchling had a mother to care for it.
Teg: I'd like to work in Biology when I grow up. What are the prerequisites?
Flossie: An understanding of how DNA works.
Plus an eye for beauty and symmetry.
Teg: I really like Marla over in Astronomy.
Teg: Flossie, why do you visit this planet so often?
Flossie: It's where we carry out our biology research.
Teg: We have an R & D division?
Teg: Flossie, what goes on in this biology lab?
flossie: We do research on DNA.
We're developing new species that can survive in warmer climates.
Flossie: Global cooling isn't very common anywhere.
Teg: Flossie, it's very warm here on this planet. Aren't you uncomfortable here?
Flossie: Only when I get careless and slip down into three dimensions.
Teg: You're a hot gator.
Flossie: [tail smack]
(Zilfer) My butterfly species is flawed. Its lifespan is only three weeks.
(Flossie) Look on the bright side. What can go wrong in three weeks?
(Zilfer) A lot, if they never get old enough to reproduce.
(Scoot) I’m going to spice up this species of human by creating three genders instead of two.
[panel with Scoot and Flossie not saying anything]
(Flossie) Have you thought this all the way through?
Flossie: My new planet’s society is starting to pollute the air and water
Quark: Tough love. No dogs and cats on that planet until they shape up
Flossie: That seems a little harsh.
Quark: OK, maybe Pomeranians. But that’s it.
(Quark) I'm sure you're all aware that workplace discrimination rules also apply in the higher dimensions.
(Quark) Ignorant prejudices have no place here.
(Flossie) Tibbo, why do you avoid working with Zilfer?
(Tibbo) I think he's a crocodile.
(Zilfer) Flossie, you and I make a great team.
(Zilfer) I find planets that are technically viable for life, and you check them for visual beauty.
(Flossie) Plus I correct all your math errors.
(Quark) Zilfer, your new species of humans is technically brilliant but they have no artistic creativity.
(Quark) Their lives are mechanical, they have no fun, and their souls are starved.
(Tibbo) OK, but they found a short proof of Fermat's Last Theorem, so don't be going all snarky on me.
(Flossie) Zilfer, you're always finding fault with my new animals. Try to be more positive.
(Zilfer) But I'm usually right.
(flossie) You can evolve new species flawlessly but you can't evolve yourself.
Quark: Teg, once we release a design, it's very difficult to alter the DNA. It can't be done without starting a new species.
Quark: And meanwhile, the earlier species, if viable, continues on. Intentional DNA modifications happen very rarely.
Teg: Give me an example.
Quark: We did a major upgrade of the intelligence of humans on Earth 200,000 Earth years ago. We finally got it approved by the Board.
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