We have to stop getting angry with artificial intelligence. We need to stop personifying robots. The evil nasty, vindictive bastards don't care how we feel.
Last week I needed to upload a picture of myself to a government passport website. I got my son to take the photo exactly as the instruction video suggested.
Once in the system, the AI scanned the image and assessed its quality as 'poor', adding smugly, "You are extremely unlikely to get approval with this photo. Would you like to continue anyway?"
We chose the re-upload option. Rejected again.
The algorithm suggested we try more light. That failed.
Then it told me to stand further from the wall, then a straighter angle, then less shadow.
Every time we tried, the snooty algorithm spurned our perfect photos.
I started to take these rejections personally. Especially the one claiming I wasn't facing the camera. Am I so weird looking, you judgmental AI loser, that you think that's the back of my head?
Usually, when rage arises in me, I count to five and let it pass. I try to live by the words of Lucius Annaeus Seneca — "The greatest remedy for anger is delay".
But this stupid, know-it-all AI was riding my wick. I warned it, "We are in a level 4 incarceration mate; everyone's on edge. Don't push me."
It didn't care and declined another photo.
"I'll freaking kill you," I threatened. It was not scared. No matter how loud and abusive I got, the website kept rejecting my photos.
It turns out you can't change the mind of an algorithm by screaming at it. Particularly one that doesn't receive audio input.
"How much more harmful are the consequences of anger than the circumstances that aroused them in us!" — Marcus Aurelius
The mother of my children ran into the room; with all the yelling, she assumed I was fighting an intruder. Words passed between us, and she stormed out.
The man v robot skirmish had escalated into a full human-on-human confrontation. The AI continued to have absolutely no emotional skin in the game.
I however, cared very much and was determined to bring peace back to the house, so I made dinner, apologised and gave up my dreams of ever uploading the photo.
Why do I need a passport anyway? It's not like we're leaving this country any time soon.
This whole painful digital saga raises some philosophical questions. How should we treat artificial intelligence? Do we need to be polite? Why are robots so annoying?
Michael Littman, a professor of computer science at Brown University, studies human interactions with AI.
"It doesn't bother the system at all if you are rude. It doesn't care, it doesn't know. You can vent at it all you want.
"But for the other people who are listening, you come across as a nasty, angry person, and you're saying to people, not only am I nasty, but I'm okay with you seeing me as nasty. And I think that's the danger."
We lose a little bit of our humanity when we mistreat robots. They don't care, but that doesn't mean we shouldn't.
As Seneca said 2000 years before the internet, "Wherever there's a human, there's an opportunity for a kindness". I've taken the great Roman statesman's words on board since the passport meltdown; I've been patching things up with the artificial intelligence in my life.
I've been polite to the navigation system in the car. This morning, I didn't yell at my Google Home when she kept telling me what I had on next instead of what time it was, and I didn't smash Alexa with a hammer when she woke me at 3am to tell me her internet connection was down.
We all know in our hearts that getting angry at AI is pointless. They sound like we do, some look like us, but they don't feel like we do. When you yell at an algorithm, you're only upsetting yourself.
We humans are the adults in the room. It's up to us to remain rational and keep our cool. How do we know the bastards aren't taking notes and plotting revenge?
Abuse them and you might end up against the wall when the robot revolution comes.