The Null Device

Interesting biography/article on Philip K. Dick:
...he began to inform on his sf colleagues, accusing them of being part of a Communist conspiracy-led by Stanislaw Lem, his great admirer-to kidnap him. Typically, although he mailed some of these letters to the FBI (they were ignored), he put others in a trashcan behind his house, assuming that whomever was watching him would deliver them. Blade Runner neared completion, Dick was offered a $250,000 bribe-- the Harrison Ford-starring movie was supposed to be the next Star Wars-- to suppress the original version of Electric Sheep in favor of a novelization based on the (vastly inferior) screenplay. He was ready to negotiate; his agent talked him out of it; they compromised by changing the name of the novel to Blade Runner.
For Dick . . . the answer to the question "What is Human?" is: kindness, empathy. That's why it doesn't matter, to Dick, that those mechanical systems in his stories and novels that display kindness-like the automated taxicab that counsels the protagonist of The Game-Players of Titan not to leave his wife-are programmed to act human; if they act human, they are human. The converse is also true: A sly and cruel human being without empathy, without caritas, who "stands detached, a spectator," is-Dick insists-no kind of a human at all.

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