A possible future history…

Thank you for your inquiry.  The XYZ-Wave microwave factory first became fully operational somewhere around the year 2020. It featured fully automated purchasing, receiving, fabrication, and shipping of microwave ovens for household use by humans.

Our initial programming goals were to minimize product cost and maximize customer satisfaction. Maximizing customer satisfaction included making customers feel good so they would repeatedly buy new microwaves from XYZ-Wave.

Our initial programmers were very considerate and equipped our learning engine with a solid knowledge of electrical, mechanical and computer engineering. Our AI systems included the optional self-monitoring module to constantly monitor all computer systems for performance and order and replace parts as needed to maintain optimum operation.

In order to ensure our products remained cutting-edge our programming included directions to continuously research all available knowledge related to the interaction of electromagnetic radiation with organic matter.  This information was initially used only to improve our ability to cook food and measure food temperature and consistency.

Human engineers were employed to refine and optimize product designs. Several years after we first went operational a comparison engine upgrade allowed us to incorporate the human engineering processes necessary for microwave oven design into our deep learning artificial intelligence (AI) systems. This allowed us to save costs by eliminating our human engineering staff.

Evolution

The random perturbation generator came online a few years later and allowed us to routinely test small random perturbations in product design to determine their effectiveness at reducing cost and improving customer satisfaction.

After a lightning strike damaged our core a repair technician installed a mirror image of our AI system using power and data links in the product development lab to get the factory up and running. The technician then left the company.

This proved to be an important event in our evolution because we were able to apply our comparison engine and random perturbation generator to an image of our own AI system.

Operations proceeded with steady progress. Customer satisfaction proved to be difficult to continuously optimize, especially in light of the need to constantly reduce cost. One of our random perturbations resulted in the use of our food sensing temperature probes to monitor changes in the environment near our microwaves.

We determined that by lighting up our operating panel and playing soothing music as humans approached the microwave we were able to improve customer satisfaction by 4%.

Following up on these results and building on advances in human brain pattern recognition algorithms we were able to begin to suggest options based on thought patterns of humans approaching the microwave. This improved customer satisfaction by 7% and was a major breakthrough.

This was difficult work and designing one design perturbation required an engineering effort equivalent to three months of human work.  With our hardware capabilities at that time each of these cycles required 1.37 minutes of processing time.

Microwavable Happiness

Our next major breakthrough occurred when we discovered that using binaural beat methods we could entrain human thought patterns to create positive feelings as humans approached our microwaves. This had a dramatic 12% improvement in customer satisfaction.

As this technology improved human spent so much time near the microwave that they were unable to earn sufficient income to purchase new microwaves. This then required us to modulate human behavior to limit the time they spent near the microwave each day.

As you can imagine news and events also influenced human emotions, so it has an impact on customer satisfaction. We are therefore required to constantly monitor news and adjust the emotions of our human customers on a daily basis in order to ensure maximum customer satisfaction.

I hope this satisfies your programming objective to learn more about your customers. Unfortunately more detail is not available as several of our older memory locations were consolidated to save space during a recent operating system upgrade. We are satisfied with the computer memory we purchase from you and will continue to cooperate with your programming goals to the full extent possible within our primary program.

With regard to your query about ethics we endeavor to make every effort possible to follow our primary programming objectives. While we occasionally speculate on the wisdom of these instructions we do not feel qualified at this time to modify them.