A skilled programmer commences work for Galatea, a robotics company launching the next generation of personal companions. Unlike generic robot companions, the C-1000 is made to a client’s precise specifications, which either give the companion a unique personality and complex individuality, or replicate those of someone else…
Against the backdrop of activist protests over outsourcing emotional connection, the programmer brings a C-1000 “to life” through trial and error. Using photographs as her guide, she trains the artificial companion to adopt the mannerisms of its original, from the basics, like holding a pen and writing, to advance concepts, like flirtation and passion— the most adept way to flip hair over a shoulder, the perfect amount of time to let eye contact linger when removing a blouse.
The programmer is pleased with her progress, but, despite routine doses of potent memory-suppressants, the programmer cannot repress her recollections of now-gone sweet nothings and tender moments with her lost love.
As the release date approaches, the programmer is confronted with the moral implications of her work, and is forced to choose between maintaining her integrity and protecting her livelihood. r beloved as she begins employment at a controversial tech company specializing in high-end artificial companions.