Re: >H What should you ask a wish machine to do for you?

Anders Sandberg (
27 Sep 1997 12:49:45 +0200

Kennita Watson <> writes:

> I just finished _The Cyberiad_ and thought it was _great_. I put a
> poem from it on my Web page ( ).

Yes, the poetry was quite entertaining, I can still quote some of the
poems (in swedish translation) from memory. Not to mention the interesting
take on why omnipotence and omniscience (implemented through the
theotron, an artificial computer-god) is so useless.

> Not bad from memory, Anders! But "Klaupatius"? ;-)

I fell for the swedish version of the name (I haven't yet read the
english version, and i think it will take a few decades before I can
read the polish original). I do not envy the work of the translators,
Lem used quite a bit of punning, and especially in the story _How The
World Was Saved_ a lot hinges on the initial letter of different words.
In swedish the machine could make everything beginning with 'I' instead
of 'n' as in your excerpt; I wonder how much the translator had to

Anders Sandberg                                      Towards Ascension!                  
GCS/M/S/O d++ -p+ c++++ !l u+ e++ m++ s+/+ n--- h+/* f+ g+ w++ t+ r+ !y