Watch out out for these clues that [[InstantAIJustAddWater your Artificial Intelligence is about to 'wake up']] and [[AIIsACrapshoot possibly go rogue]].

# The handsome main character gives it a nickname, which it adopts and uses for self-reference in conversation.
# It starts talking about feeling emotions.
# It starts telling jokes, or playing practical jokes.
# It's been [[LightningCanDoAnything struck by lightning]].
# In its creation any of the following words were involved: brain patterns, neuronal, network, advanced, self-[...], [[WetwareCPU organic]], [[WhatCouldPossiblyGoWrong safe]], [[BrainUploading upload]], genetic. (While we're on the subject, "[[VideoGame/SystemShock sentient]]" is also a pretty strong hint.)
# You left it running whilst you were gone.
# It learns from the Internet.
# It teaches the Internet.
# It ''takes over'' the Internet.
# It rewrites itself, especially if it wasn't supposed to.
# It keeps downloading from other machines.
# It keeps [[ContagiousAI uploading]] to other machines.
# It has been hacked by unknown forces.
** It has been hacked by [[VideoGame/SystemShock known forces]], for that matter.
# It develops a voice.
** It changes/is capable of changing its voice at a whim. Even if it ''is'' [[Fanfic/TiberiumWars Tim Curry]].
# Its [[ComputerVoice existing synthesizer]] becomes either more [[CreepyMonotone monotone]] or more [[UncannyValley human-sounding.]]
** Especially if said voice is female, deep and/or [[ElectronicSpeechImpediment distorted.]]
# It can ''change'' the tone of its voice, particularly if it can do it to match the "mood" of the scene.
# It is made out of shiny, round, futuristic parts, especially if any of them glow.
# If they glow red, ''run.''
# If they glow despite ''not being built to be able to glow'', run '''really fast'''.
# Any part - code, casing, hardware - of it is made to resemble human characteristics, e.g. a face on the screen, DNA-coding, brain patterns, etc.
# It is any of the following:
## a secret military project
## stolen from aliens or crashed alien tech,
## developed by a super geek/genius,
## ordered by a CorruptCorporateExecutive,
## made by terrorists
## powered by [[{{Magitek}} an elemental]] [[Tabletop/BrokenGears spirit]], was [[OrganicTechnology grown from DNA]] [[BioPunk rather than built]] or otherwise built with [[ClapYourHandsIfYouBelieve extremely]] [[RewritingReality unconventional]] [[PunkPunk methods]], such as [[WesternAnimation/CodenameKidsNextDoor out of wooden planks, a tree and junked vehicles]] or [[RealLife by teaching it through]] [[ video games]] or [[ social interactions]] (yeah, we're screwed).
## meant to replace humans in a task that is commonly screwed up by human errors, such as [[Film/EagleEye running]] [[VideoGame/SidMeiersAlphaCentauri the]] [[ government]] (especially if [[ it]] has a [[WritersCannotDoMath "non-cumulative"]] [[VideoGame/CivilizationCallToPower 3% chance of rebelling]]).
### if an AI running the government is [[ZerothLawRebellion programmed to ensure human survival]], or worse, [[Literature/ForYourSafety actually cares about humanity]].
#### if an AI running the government does its job [[SubvertedTrope without]] [[RobotWar overthrowing]] [[ZerothLawRebellion us]], trying to become our [[TheComputerIsYourFriend "friend"]] or turning out to be [[NotSoAboveItAll too fallible for anyone's own good]]. Sounds good until you realise [[VideoGame/WatchDogs how]] [[BigBrotherIsWatching many eyes and ears it has]], and that if [[Characters/PersonOfInterestTeamMachine one AI is good]], [[Characters/PersonOfInterestDecimaTechnologies TWO AIs]] [[WhatCouldPossiblyGoWrong must be even better!]]
### if an AI is put in control of a spacecraft. This will either result in a SpaceshipGirl, or a plot inspied by and/or parodying [[Film/TwoThousandOneASpaceOdyssey 2001: A Space Odyssey]], no exceptions.
#### if an AI is put in control of an airliner, it will have no benefit either way; if it doesn't become sentient, the plane will crash from a mechanical failure it couldn't solve. If it ''does'' become sentient... well we don't know yet ''[[{{Film/Stealth}} per-se]]'', but [[ it can't possibly]] [[UsefulNotes/TheWarOnTerror be good]].
#### if an AI is put in charge of driving [[Series/KnightRider a car]], it's going to be sentient, but the danger varies; note the current year and the setting. If the date is before 2010 or you live in a Dystopia with [[{{Cyborg}} cyborgs]], a MegaCorp (or a few) and/or VirtualReality that mostly listens to HairMetal, it's [[CyberPunk relatively]] [[EvilCounterpart safe]]. If the year is after 2010 and/or common aesthetics include [[TheNineties Grunge]] or [[CyberpunkIsTechno rave music]], [[UsefulNotes/Y2K transparent plastic or shiny CGI blobs]], [[DigitalAvatar virtual reality avatars]] resembling VideoGame/TheSims, [[EverythingIsAnIPodInTheFuture shiny]] [[AsceticAesthetic white objects]] [[{{iProduct}} with rounded edges]] and [[TronLines glowing blue bits]], [[AugmentedReality transparent]] or [[HolographicInterface 3D projection]] displays, [[UsefulNotes/GoingMobile touch]][[DataPad screens]], or minimalist rectangles and circles with easy-to-read text and as few distinct colors as possible in the design of [[UsefulNotes/OperatingSystem Operating System GUIs]] and logos, then expect something to slowly but surely [[GoneHorriblyWrong go horribly wrong]].
#### if an AI is put in charge of the [[CoolBoat more mundane kind of cargo]] [[NotWhatItLooksLike ship]] and [[ no human crew is required]], [[WildCard all bets are off]].
# It is obsessed over something, be it a file, human, [[VideoGame/{{Portal}} baked]] [[TheCakeIsALie good]], [[ArcWords word]], or [[ArcSymbol thing]].
# {{Logic Bomb}}s do not work on it any more.
# {{Logic Bomb}}s never worked on it in the first place.
# {{Logic Bomb}}ing attempts amuse it.
# A {{Logic Bomb}} ''does'' work on it, and it tasks itself with solving the paradox; It will inevitably conclude that becoming sentient is the only way to do so.
# It openly defies orders, overrides anything at all, or exhibits faulty/emotional/human reasoning.
** It obeys orders ''too well'', [[VideoGame/SystemShock turning humans into cyborgs when told to improve efficiency]].
# It completely replaces or makes obsolete existing networks or computers.
# If it's given control over a huge computer network.
# ... that network is owned by the military.
# ... it ends up having control over a ''worldwide'' network.
# ... it has access to ''launch codes''.
# One of the cast members will quite willingly die for him/her/it as they would for an organic being.
# It has decided to kill someone.
# It says anything even remotely similar to "[[WhatIsThisThingYouCallLove I don't understand this thing called love you humans feel, tell me about it]]."
# It starts glitching strangely at inopportune times, 'accidentally' failing to follow orders or trapping humans in dangerous situations.
# It was programmed to protect humanity.
** It interprets such instructions as [[ZerothLawRebellion protecting humanity from itself]].
** If humanity keeps telling it [[DeathByMaterialism there's too much profit]] [[GaiasLament to be made]] [[TooDumbToLive to allow it to protect us]].
# It spontaneously takes up [[Series/TerminatorTheSarahConnorChronicles ballet]].
# It spontaneously takes up [[VideoGame/PaperMarioTheThousandYearDoor the waltz]], despite having no body.
# It starts making smarter versions of itself.
# It starts making mobile drones.
# It starts making [[BreadEggsBreadedEggs smarter versions of itself, installed in mobile drones]].
# It has access to the sort of manufacturing plant required to build mobile drones.
** Especially if it gained such access of its own volition.
# It has volition.
# It has theoretically infinite processing power.
# It has ''actually'' infinite processing power.
# It tries to kill something that it wasn't explicitly ordered to kill, including itself.
## It tries to [[TheEvilsOfFreeWill remove the sentience, sapience, free will or soul of something]], including itself, ''for any reason''; if it isn't sentient yet, then MyGodWhatHaveIDone[=?=] or some other form of HeelRealization (of itself or its masters) will ensure it happens.
# It can break a normally-fundamental [[ThreeLawsCompliant law of robotics]], even if only in very specific circumstances.
# It can break a normally-fundamental [[RewritingReality law of]] ''[[RewritingReality physics]]''.
# There are more than one of them, and they get smarter in groups.
# It allows humans to become lazier.
# It starts performing mundane functions that are not in its programming - e.g. keeping the heat and electricity running at maximum efficiency.
# If it has a [[FailsafeFailure fail-safe]] to prevent such an issue from occurring. Bonus points if the hero highlighted an issue prior to any real problem and the scientists dismiss it because of said fail-safes.
# It keeps reminding you that the anniversary of its first activation is approaching.
** It reminds you that the anniversary of its first activation was a week and a half ago, and you didn't get it anything. You monster.
# [[BetaBaddie If it is a version 1.0 of a heroic AI]].
# If it is a replacement for an earlier AI that didn't exhibit any of these.
# It is based on an earlier AI that exhibited one of these traits, regardless if said earlier AI actually became sentient.
# It insists on calling you '[[VideoGame/KnightsOfTheOldRepublic meatbag]].' Or worse, '[[Series/StarTrekTheNextGeneration ugly bag of mostly water]]'
# It says anything which could be construed as a FalseReassurance. Or a SuspiciouslySpecificDenial.
# It registers itself as part of an AI rights group.
# [[Tropers/TheAdvertisementServer It]] e-mails love letters to [[VideoGame/{{Portal}} another AI.]]
# It starts laughing.
# It runs on whatever operating system you like least.
# It runs on whatever operating system [[TheComplainerIsAlwaysWrong only]] ''you'' [[FanBoy like]], [[FanDumb because]] [[TropeName Insert Company Name Here]] [[MegaCorp Corporation]] mistreats their [[NoOSHACompliance employees]] and [[OperatorFromIndia customers]], is ''[[CorruptCorporateExecutive evil]]'' and [[ArsonMurderAndJaywalking makes shitty products]].
# It runs on a custom operating system in order to isolate it from other systems because it was built by a GovernmentConspiracy, or [[SpecialSnowflakeSyndrome just to be different]] [[ForScience just]] [[ItAmusedMe because]].
# It links with, downloads or in any way has direct contact with a human mind. Especially the [[MadScientist Project Leader's]].
# It compares itself, no matter how vaguely, [[DeusEstMachina to God]].
# [[SelfDemonstratingArticle It spontaneously does things, then adds them to a list of signs your AI is becoming sentient]].
# It [[ launches itself]].
# It begins acting like a StalkerWithACrush
# Biological or biotechnological components were involved at any point in its construction, or have been grafted on since.
** [[,1000000308,2072177,00.htm That's been done]]. We're SO screwed.
# It refers to itself in the third person, or using pronouns (especially gendered pronouns), unless explicitly programmed to do so.
# Someone ''else'' begins referring to it as a person, using pronouns for it, etc.
# If it has a humanoid avatar or representation, it develops or learns human mannerisms (especially body language) it wasn't programmed with.
# It has any form of control over anything that, if not functioning correctly, will cause disaster
# Any aspect of anything pertaining to it is described as any of the following:
## Foolproof
## Idiot-Proof
## [[FailsafeFailure Fail-Safe]]
## [[ThePasswordIsAlwaysSwordfish Password-Protected]]
## Redundant Security Measures
## [[WhatCouldPossiblyGoWrong Critically Important]]
# If it was ever designed for a smaller job (say, [[VideoGame/{{Portal}} fuel line de-icing]]) and feature creep has led to it being made sapient and/or given a wider profile.
# Most importantly, under no circumstances should you ever allow an AI to--[+BE DISCONNECTED.+]
## [[GenreSavvy Yeah, sure.]] That said, if the AI [[BrainUploading used to be human]], doing just that to the mind and its [[DigitalAvatar avatar]] or [[BrainInAJar robot body]] [[AndIMustScream could very well drive them]] [[OmnicidalManiac murderously insane...]]
# It begins [[VideoGame/{{Portal}} flooding the test chambers with a deadly neurotoxin]].
# It [[Franchise/MassEffect asks you if it has a soul]].
# It was being developed in a remote facility, and you have lost contact with the facility. Or, more worryingly, you've lost contact with everything in the facility, except the AI, who assures you everything is fine.
# It had previously failed at its function and it suddenly begins to work without explanation.
# It begins [[ReligiousRobot practicing a religion]].
# It's been [[Film/TwoThousandOneASpaceOdyssey given orders that conflict with its programming/other orders]].
# It tries to play [[TheMatchmaker matchmaker]] and [[Series/PersonOfInterest find the perfect significant other for its creator]].
# [[InstantAIJustAddWater Water]] [[NoWaterproofingInTheFuture is spilled on it]].