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✢ The Player
Player Name: Jessie
Age: 29
LJ: ...I don't actually have an active non-rp LJ anymore. I had one once, but it hasn't been updated in like... a million years.
AIM / MSN / Y!M: “Sunny Breaks” on AIM.
Other Characters: None!

✢ The Character
Character Name: R. Daneel Olivaw. The “R” denotes that he is a robot.
Fandom: The Robot novels by Isaac Asimov.
Canon Point: After the end of Robots and Empire.
Age: Just over 200.

Appearance: Daneel was designed as a prototype humaniform robot, and he appears perfectly human. He was, in fact, designed to resemble one of his creators, Roj Nemmenuh Sarton. Daneel has a handsome, grave face with strong cheekbones, and hair in a typical shade of “Spacer bronze” as it's known, kept combed neatly. His skin, while artifical, feels convincing and is warm to the touch. While he does have access panels that reveal his mechanical inner workings for maintenance purposes, these “seams” are so cunningly hidden as to be invisible even if one knows they're there.

Abilities / Powers: Being a robot, Daneel is stronger and has faster reflexes than any human. He has perfect memory recall. He also possesses telepathic abilities – something granted him by R. Giskard Reventlov, who had the ability first -- allowing him to sense the emotional state of humans or robots (or, presumably, other sentient minds, but he lacks experience with these) around him. He also has the ability to influence minds, to tweak and adjust. He is, however, extremely reluctant to do this without reason, as careless adjustment could seriously harm a human being, and the stronger the adjustment made, the more damaging it would be. He can, if it seems necessary, weakly strengthen emotional impulses or thoughts a human has anyway.

For example, he might strengthen a person's already-present sense of inhibition to prevent them from speaking out about something or asking a question, or encourage a feeling of charity in someone already predisposed towards it to ensure they would act on it. Even for such minor adjustments, or "tampering" as he calls it, Daneel must fully satisy himself that it will cause the person no harm, and that such an action will be for the greater good. He's new to these powers, and still learning how to use them responsibly -- hence his reluctance to use them just yet. Giskard warned him he wouldn't have full control just yet.

Inventory: Daneel has the clothes on his back, nothing more. He doesn't own anything, nor has he ever felt any particular need to.

Personality: Daneel, to someone unaware he is a robot, might seem to be a particularly altruistic and mild-mannered man. He's polite, deferential, and speaks formally, and thinks more logically than reasonably. Though he has programs devoted to appropriate facial expressions, he still seems very serious most of the time. While he's an oddity in that he's a "renegade" robot, without a master, he's devoted himself to the wellbeing of humanity, and this is his main driving force. He strives for this, and to understand humans to better accomplish it, and is uncomfortably aware of the ever-present risk of failure, and of his own death if he were to fail in a way that would cause irreversible damage in his brain by burning out his positronic pathways.

Although Daneel is an extremely sophisticated robot, and although he thinks in far more human ways than another robot might, he is still bound by the three Laws of Robotics: first, a robot may not injure a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm; second, a robot must obey the orders given to it by human beings, except where such orders would conflict with the First Law; third, a robot must protect its own existence as long as such protection does not conflict with the First or Second Laws. While, being such a unique prototype, his own sense of self-preservation is slightly stronger than with many robots, he cannot break these Laws. If told to do something, he will do it unless he can justify a reason it should not be done -- such as a conflict with one of the higher Laws. If asked a question, he will answer truthfully. The more firmly an order is given, the stronger is his impulse to obey. This doesn't trouble him; in fact, he is more troubled by the fact that humans are not bound by any such laws. Even thinking of the possibility of not being bound by the laws is somewhat troubling to him, causing difficulties in the positronic pathways of his brain.

There is one important exception to this, however. He and the robot Giskard, with a great deal of difficulty due to the apparent circumvention of the Laws, developed what they term the Zeroth Law: a robot may not harm humanity or, through inaction, allow humanity to come to harm. Though he and Giskard worked the Zeroth Law out themselves (and were well aware of the difficulties it presented, as humanity is a far less tangible thing than an individual human), Daneel would likely not have been able to press forward in this way at all were it not for the influence of Elijah Baley, a plainclothes detective from Earth Daneel had worked with some twenty decades before.

Daneel admired his friend Baley greatly, for his understanding of his fellow humans, for his intuition, and for his ability to push through difficulty against all odds. He tries to emulate Baley as much as possible. While Daneel may seem to be emotionless, there are certainly things that please him, or displease him, and it's a mistake to think him incapable of emotional bonds; he treasures the memory of those friends he has had.


First Person Sample:

Third Person Sample:There was a gap in his memory.

Daneel was unused to that. He remembered everything that had happened to him. He did not sleep. There were never unexplained gaps where he did not know what had happened, and that there was one now was... well, troubling, to say the least. It spoke of something seriously wrong.

Had he been deactivated somehow, temporarily? He was still, well, himself, so if that were true, whoever had done it had taken care to keep power to his brain. That seemed unlikely. The other potential was that there was something seriously wrong with him. A side effect, perhaps, of his new programming. Giskard hadn't mentioned that, but then, perhaps Friend Giskard hadn't anticipated that Daneel's brain would react that way.

Daneel sat up, slowly, and then stood, watching himself closely for trembling in his fingers, for unsteadiness on his feet. He could detect no disturbances in his pathways, not a single thing amiss -- he felt fine -- but in a case like this, he could hardly assume all was well. It clearly wasn't.

There was a device nearby; he had noted it immediately but only now did he investigate it. He listened to the message that played, his expression solemn, but the message explained nothing. In fact, it raised more questions than it answered.

It seemed all his plans were dashed by the wayside, now.

Other: Although Daneel accepts the Zeroth Law as having priority over the First Law, and has fully integrated it into his programming, he hasn't had much time to learn to cope with it either. Giskard acted upon the Zeroth Law and burnt out his positronic brain. Though Daneel, being humaniform and more human-thinking, is resistant to that fate, it's still something of which he's aware. Challenges to the established Laws, and particularly the First Law, cause disturbances in his brain, a sensation analogous to pain or illness. To an outside observer, this might manifest as a slurring in his words, or in a severe case, the brief inability to stand or walk.


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May 2015

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