HAL 9000

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HAL 9000 is the sentient on-board computer of the Discovery One spacecraft in Arthur C. Clarke's fictional Space Odyssey saga.

HAL (Heuristically programmed ALgorithmic computer) is an artificial intelligence which interacts with the crew, usually represented only as a red television camera "eye" that can be seen throughout Discovery. He speaks in a soft voice and a conversational manner, in contrast to the ship's crew who speak in a terse way, with little inflection. The voice of HAL 9000 was portrayed by Canadian actor Douglas Rain.

HAL became operational on 12 January 1997 (1992 in the film)[1] at the HAL Laboratories in Urbana, Illinois as production number 3. His first instructor was Dr. Chandra (Mr. Langley in the first film). HAL is capable not only of speech, speech recognition, facial recognition, and natural language processing, but also lip reading, art appreciation, interpreting and expressing emotions, reasoning, and playing chess, in addition to maintaining all systems on an interplanetary mission.

HAL was ranked No. 13 on a list of greatest film villains of all time on the AFI's 100 Years... 100 Heroes and Villains.

In the French-language version of 2001: A Space Odyssey, HAL's name is given as "CARL", for Cerveau Analytique de Recherche et de Liaison ("Analytic Brain for Research and Communication"). The camera plates, however, still read "HAL 9000".


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