And the Singularity Hub has a nice writeup on the Electric Sheep. I really appreciate the research that Peter Murray did for his story. He did his homework and put together his own narrative. He concludes:
And then [Draves] starts to get metaphysical for real.
“…is humanity the only possible vehicle for what really amounts to a soul? …some people believe that all material matter follows the rules of physics, and if you can figure out what physics is, a computer can follow the rules and therefore you can simulate life in a computer. So it really becomes a profound question that we are, as a society, really just starting to struggle with.”
Right now, the Electric Sheep are still just screensavers, albeit evolving and unpredictable screensavers. But what limits are there to the kind of reiterative, informatics cross-breeding underlying their generation? What might be produced when the same process is applied to more functional outputs? What if we woke up one morning and our computers were doing things that we didn’t fully understand.
And so on.
How that might play out is as unpredictable as the sheep. Until it happens, I suppose we’re left merely to wonder…and perhaps dream.