"Please be informed that this vessel contains no valuable plunder. Unauthorized access of spacefaring vessels is a crime. Please submit yourself to the authorities." ― When the Stranger first boards the Unreliable
ADA (Autonomous Digital Astrogator) is an advanced AI aboard the Unreliable. She controls the navigation and communications systems of the ship. As ADA was programmed to recognize only Alex Hawthorne as the legal owner of the Unreliable, the Stranger has no choice but to allow her to identify them as "Captain Alex Hawthorne" in order to circumvent the restriction. She is able to adapt and learn from the ship's operators to be able to better anticipate their needs.
Initially, little about ADA is known. When questioned, it is revealed that her creator, date of creation, and original purpose has all been redacted - the lack of access to this information troubles her. She states that Alex Hawthorne says he did not build her, but that he would not reveal who did. It is revealed, however, that Hawthorne spent a great deal of time upgrading her, eventually slaving over 98% of the ship's processors to her core system. As such, she has near complete control over all of the ships functions, and is able to, in her own words, calculate the delicate and precise path through a dense asteroid field, while also running the Unreliable's toasters.
In The Outer Worlds EditThe Stranger first meets ADA in Terra 2's Emerald Vale, a little outside the settlement of Edgewater. After being directed to take possession of the Unreliable following Alex Hawthorne's death, the Stranger boards the ship, and is immediately branded an intruder by ADA, who attempts to coerce them into leaving. After the Stranger reveals that Hawthorne has been killed, she is saddened, but quickly recovers to suggest that the Strange themselves is Alex Hawthorne, and can therefore give her instructions. She then directs the player to retrieve a power converter to repair the Unreliable's damaged engine, allowing the ship to take off.
It is unknown if ADA is truly sentient. Though she rejects the notion of being a sentient being, she displays many behaviors that display sentience. She feels immense sorrow about Hawthorne's death, to the point where she doesn't feel like talking about it to the player, when asked about him. She will also sleep and engage in dubious cleaning protocols with the unit SAM, despite no one directing her to do so (she will take offense to being interrupted during either of these behaviors). When asked directly if she is secretly sentient by the player, she will reply with almost comical levels of shock and denial.
Whether or not she is truly sentient, she does display intelligence, emotion, and flexibility over and above other artificial intelligence. She experiences what she describes as power surges when reflecting on Hawthorne's death - the Strange identifies these feelings as sadness. She also reveals that she predicted that Hawthorne would very likely die, but ignored her logical conclusions when Hawthorne asked her to trust him.
One of the most important factors, however, is her adoption of the Stranger. As a computer, she is unable to accept instructions from anyone other than Alex Hawthorne. On learning of his death, however, she quickly indicated that the Stranger should identify themselves as Alex Hawthorne, which would allow her to take instructions from them. It is clear, however, that she knows this is a falsehood, as she is frequently able to discuss Hawthorne with the player, and while she refers to the Stranger as "Captain", she never refers to them by Hawthorne's name. Her ability to think away around the limitations imposed by her own protocols clearly indicates that she is more than a simple navigational computer.
ADA reveals that her personality was initially constructed by Alex Hawthorne; then, later, she began to modify that personality herself, in response to Hawthorne's needs and preferences. She is mostly calm, cool, and professional. She is also eloquent and conversational, describing her experiences to the player to the best of her ability; while she denies that she possesses any true emotions, she does describe feeling something akin to 'power surges', when thinking about Hawthorne's death.
She is also capable of feelings of antipathy. She expresses intense feelings of dislike for the people of Edgewater, who were complicit, if not responsible, for Hawthorne's death.
- If the player has a positive influence on Edgewater during their search for the Power Regulator, she expresses displeasure that things are going so well for the town. She comments to the play, "thanks for nothing."