More Fun With Eliza, the Emacs Psychotherapist

It’s funny to me that the second most popular post on this blog is the one about playing Tetris and talking to Eliza in emacs.  So I’ve been trying to think, what conversation can I start up with Eliza?

Recently I’ve been having this problem of my MacBook Pro’s keyboard and trackpad becoming unresponsive.  I’ve spent a couple of hours reading threads on various forums of all the people having this problem.  (I’m actually kinda loligagging online right now just to see if the Hardware Restart worked…) Anyway, I figured this was as good a problem as any to approach Eliza with.  Afterall, it can be pretty nerve-wracking when one’s beloved computer goes all nutty.

Again, every other line, beginning with the first line, is Eliza “talking,” with one exception that I will point out in the caption of the appropriate screencap.  The other lines are mine.

screen1

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Looking at the above screencap, the five lines above where I wrote “Wow, now you’re talking to yourself!” were all Eliza (because I hit ‘return’ twice between each of her lines without ‘saying’ anything).  Notice how it seems like she took her own sentences as mine in this instance (that is, how she switched the pronouns, lol).

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Another interesting thing about this is that in my other post where I took screencaps using Grab of the Terminal running Eliza, it came out a bit blurry, whereas here it’s really clear.  The set from the older post was taken on my iMac that runs Tiger, whereas this set was taken on my MacBook Pro, which has Leopard.

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2 thoughts on “More Fun With Eliza, the Emacs Psychotherapist

  1. I must admit, you are on of my best finds via blogging. Not only are you local….you post, and you are freaking so inneresting, like this one….I don’t even have a mac (not that hip?), and I dig it.
    Your reply on my blog, about blogging and hits, is keeping me going down the blogging path…for now. I might change it in the future…I don’t know.
    Peace and happiness 2u

    • Aww, thanks! ^_^

      Actually, you don’t need to have a Mac to run the Eliza program. It’s actually part of a program called emacs, of which the GNU version is very popular. Playing around in Mac’s Terminal is perhaps the antithesis of the hipster image Apple portrays in its ads, ironically enough.

      Here’s Eliza’s Wikipedia page if you’d like to learn more:
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ELIZA

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