Tony Stark’s robots had strange names. All except JARVIS.
Everyone commented that they were mean and cruel. Bruce pointed out once that Tony had programmed feelings into them, so it wasn’t very nice to call them names like ‘Dummy’ and ‘You’.
Nobody ever realised that Tony’s little creations didn’t mind their names, despite having access to the internet (and therefore knowing full well that they were normally used as terms of endearment).
Dummy was built when Tony was in his teens, about a year before he went to MIT. Howard had called him dumb when he had messed up a section of an equation that he’d asked him to work on. Tony built the bot in three days living off no sleep and coffee. Dummy’s first files were of his creator’s suspiciously wet eyes and wide grin. (Tony always worried about Dummy. He was the oldest, so he made sure that he checked his codes and fixed up his body/wiring annually. He didn’t know what he’d do if he broke.)
You was built a year into Tony’s stay at MIT. One of his professors refused to learn his name, calling him ‘you’ and insulting everything he ever did. Calling him on every flaw. It didn’t help that a lot of Tony’s teachers praised the teen’s work over this professor’s. When it came time for a partner project, the professor yelled at him. ‘I’m not going to let you screw up someone else’s project by making them work with you.’
With Dummy’s help, Tony built another bot in the two days before the next session of that particular class. It had newer wires, a few neater lines of code but he was Dummy’s brother through and through (Tony promised Dummy that he would work on his codes and chassis as soon as he could to say thank you). The next day when the professor walked in, You was handing Tony some parts as the other students looked on in awe.
You would never forget the small smirk on Tony’s face.
JARVIS came after MIT. After the crash.
Tony had been working on this particular software for a long time, a pet project. He’d never really planned to activate it, but he’d brought it out whenever he got bored and add a few more functions and lines of code.
About 4mnths after the deaths of Howard and Maria Stark, the new assistant Pepper Potts (just a few years younger than Stark himself) went to open the door after her weekend off and found it slightly impossible. There was no doorknob and certainly no keyhole.
Imagine her surprise when she was greeted by a posh, English voice and the door opened by itself.
The sight she saw when she entered (holes in the walls, wires all over the floor and ceiling, cameras at every corner, and plaster dusting every piece of furniture) would be the subject of her nightmares for many years to come.
Tony had introduced her to JARVIS like he hadn’t just created one of the first fully functional AIs. Like he hadn’t basically just made a living house. The program could do anything. Search anything, watch everything in the house, hack servers, run data, start appliances, open doors, facial recognition on everyone, speak to both the other bots and the humans. The program was sarcastic, it worried, it looked after Tony.
Tony never corrected people on Jarvis. They’d assumed the acronym. He’d even made one for a joke which they took very seriously. Tony, Dummy, You and Jarvis all knew the story behind the man that raised Tony while his parents were busy. It was a default setting that every time Tony was down here alone with his bots, they’d be regaled with a story from his childhood that always included him, because those were his happiest.
Jarvis. The family butler. He’d been taken in the same crash that took Howard and Maria, but who mentions the aging butler that had been driving that day?
When the Avengers came to the tower to live, Tony had gotten quickly gotten annoyed. Despite his amazing programming, Tony had built Jarvis as a person and people couldn’t be everywhere at once.
He went into his lab and didn’t let any one come in, or come out himself, for a week.
Later, he introduced them to the much more mild-mannered AI, Yinsen, and another blunt, threatening one called Phillip.
Jarvis’ first priority was Tony. Yinsen’s first priority was the medical facilities and the labs.
Phillip’s was, as Tony put it, babysitting the other Avengers.
Other than the programs and his bots, no one really got the references.
Submitted by heavensarcher