Blast to the Past!

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TheBurn TheBurn's picture
Blast to the Past!

Research Station


Location Classified

...Hardly Ethical...

hey

...Waste of resources...

Hey

...and even as an experiment it reeks of-

Hey! I'm sorry you lost the vote buddy, but it is what it is.

What will this accomplish again? Oh wait, nothing!

We find some candidates, toss them into a hyperealistic simulspace of prefall Earth, let's say... July, 2018. Then, we alter their memories to make them think it's real. After a certain period, we pull them back, give them back their memories-

-As if it's that simple.

Then we give them some credits as compensation. Much more than what we usually do for guanine pigs, much more. This is the kind of thing you have to deal with in our line of work.

I'm a historian and your an “alternative psychologist” whatever that is. Even in your bullshit profession, memory whiping-

altering~

-and false imprisonment are not in the job description.

Like I said, it is what is is. All you can do at the moment is watch.

We could at least give them advice, like, “don't compliment a woman's plastic surgery.”

Why not? They got the surgery to look good, right? Actually, it doesn't matter. They're already in and we can't talk to them.

With no instructions! All they know is that they went back.

Yes, and think about it! They can do whatever they want, so let's see what they want to do! Prevent the fall, save the planet, force the transhuman revolution to happen faster, create anarchy, no limit! How do they acclimate to the primitive tech or the barbaric culture? How will they cope with the fact that the population is entirely mortal? How will they deal with the fact that anyone they befriend could perma die at any moment, that perma death is a perfect inevitability that no one could escape?! How will they feel to meet a not only a culture that accepts perma death, but religions that celebrate it!

damn, someone should really rescind your doctorate.

Picture of Fire taken under CC0 license. (That's the correct syntax, right?)

GenehackedGynoid GenehackedGynoid's picture
Neat idea, but where to go from here?

(OOC: I love this, but is there any specific way of interacting with this that you had in mind?)

TheBurn TheBurn's picture
Re: Neat idea, but where to go from here?

GenehackedGynoid wrote:
Is there any specific way of interacting with this that you had in mind?

OOC: Hmm, I was worried that this would be a dead end. Try making a field report of your character's experiences in the simulspace. Also, I did not specify this, but everyone will be sent to the same VR world and they can interact with each other.

Picture of Fire taken under CC0 license. (That's the correct syntax, right?)

GenehackedGynoid GenehackedGynoid's picture
Sent to investigate

Personal Log, Synapse (dossier here)

Firewall sent me in to investigate this so-called "experiment in alternate psychohistory", or whatever it was billed as, a while ago. I've ego-cast in as a fork and am presenting under the guise of volunteering for this "experiment".

Here it goes. I'm probably condemning myself to involuntary psychosurgery, fork slavery, or possibly even permanent death... but all of that comes with the job. Maybe this time, whatever we find here will actually really be harmless. If not... well, I've already made preparations, and it's not like it's anything more than a fork I'm condemning. I mean, sure, I am that fork, but... The pattern survives. As long as the pattern survives...

I'm going to accept the terms and conditions of this "experiment" and ego-cast in now...

[log terminated]

...Where am I? I'm... next to a dumpster? In some kind of street clothes? What habitat is this, even?

My mesh inserts aren't coming up, and I don't remember how I got here. Fuck. I'm a zero and I'm suffering from memory loss. Better at least check what this morph can handle.

Okay, okay, fairly standard human body plan. Everything looks good so far. Should find a mirror, but this height actually feels pretty correct. What's this I'm wearing, anyway? Black hooded jacket, white undershirt, pair of bluish grey pants made of some kind of stiff fabric. Pair of shoes with thick, flat bottoms. Okay, I can work with this.

...Wait, I don't see habitat walls anywhere, I can see the sky above me, and I'm breathing just fine. Too developed to be an exoplanet. Holy shit. I think this is pre-Fall Earth. No idea when - dammit, I should have paid more attention in history, and it's not like I can just look these things up.

Did I fall through some kind of temporal anomaly? No, don't be ridiculous. Those don't really exist. This must be... I must have hallucinated the entire Fall.

Next question to figure out is whether or not my Psi still works. If I even ever really got infected in the first place...

(OOC: How's this, as far as what you had in mind? I can change stuff if you want. Also, no, I'm not going to stick to the internal monologue format the entire time; and I can run some of the simulation's denizens if you'd like.)

TheBurn TheBurn's picture
Re:How's this?

GenehackedGynoid wrote:
How's this?

OOC: Good

Synapse wrote:
Next question to figure out is whether or not my Psi still works. If I even ever really got infected in the first place...

OOC: If your character believes she hallucinated The Fall, then psi not working makes more sense; however, since psi would make this a lot more interesting, psi abilities will be simulated in VR.

Picture of Fire taken under CC0 license. (That's the correct syntax, right?)

GenehackedGynoid GenehackedGynoid's picture
Synapse confuses an EMT

(OOC: Another question worth asking, I figure - is everyone who shows up here made humanoid, or do they stay in their original morphs? That could get interesting. I had Synapse's mesh inserts knocked out / removed(?) for dramatic purposes, but theoretically there would have been nothing preventing them from working - I guess it'd be just like being on an exo-planet.

Also: for the sake of interactivity, it might be a good idea for some or all of us to engineer opportunities for people from EP's present to run into each other.)


The blonde woman staggered out of the alley, with a hand to her forehead. As she looked around, she saw a few people in humanoid biomorphs walking around; some of them were using slab-shaped, palm-sized ectos, while others did not. One or two of the people looked at the disoriented newcomer and hastened their pace.

Okay, good, she thought. People. I think. Maybe, with any luck, ones who speak a language I know. As someone walked by on the side of the street she was on, she tried to follow them; they looked over their shoulder and bolted.

Fuck. That was bone-headed of me. Okay, new approach.

She turned to someone else nearby, and started shouting: "Help! Help, I'm lost!" Sure enough, that person started approaching.

"What's wrong?" This person had a face that registered as feminine to Synapse, showing signs of cellular aging that she had only previously seen on eccentrics and on rusters who had gone too long without their fixes.

"I, uh, I have no idea where I am," she blurted out after a second. That's all I can come up with? she thought to herself. I mean, okay, I know basically nothing about these people, so it's probably best to assume nothing.

"I see," said the woman with a skeptical look. She folded her arms. "This is San Francisco. Have you had too much to drink or something?"

"No, I think - I think I was mugged," she said. The woman's expression changed into pity. Nice save. "Listen, I know this won't help my case, but, uh, what's the date today? I think the mugger must have hit me in the head."

"July 2nd. Monday. Should I take you to a hospital? You might have a concussion."

"That's not the worst idea in the world," Synapse mumbled in response. "And... the year?" She chuckled sheepishly and rubbed her head some more.

"Twenty-eighteen," the woman replied.

At that, Synapse felt a little dizzy. What the hell is this? Synapse thought to herself. I don't think this is a sim-space. I'm actually here. But how? I wasn't even born for another 93 years.

"Hey, are you okay?" asked the woman. "Okay, I'm calling 911 for you and getting you an ambulance. Let's just wait right here."


Synapse soon found herself being looked over by another person in a blue outfit. The whole thing felt silly - they had dispatched a large vehicle for her and now had people fawning after her, all for a bump on the head. This was the kind of thing she could usually get treated at any standard medical station.

But they might not have medical stations like I'm used to, right? she thought to herself.

"What's your name?" asked the figure.

"Who's asking?" Synapse responded defensively. She was trained to resist interrogations, and for all she knew, this whole sequence of events could be an elaborate ploy to interrogate her.

"The EMT who's interviewing you to check your neurological state," replied the figure. She stole a glance at him. Masculine-looking face, little bit of stubble, same signs of aging she wasn't used to seeing on people. "We came out here to check on you; please don't make this a wasted trip."

Alright - however I got into this situation, I don't think giving out my name would kill me, she thought. On the astronomically unlikely off-chance that this is really happening, maybe this will get me some help.

"Chelsea," she said. "Chelsea M. Sloan."

"That's a start," said the doctor. "Now, did you -"

"I don't remember anything before I presumably got knocked out, so that's retrograde amnesia. I am pretty sure I remember everything that's been happening since." She smirked faintly. "Thought I'd save you some time."

"You should let us worry about that, but thanks," said the EMT. "Now, do you have any ID on you?"

Synapse rolled up the sleeve of her jacket and showed the EMT her wrist. The EMT gave her an incredulous look, and Synapse immediately felt a little silly.

"No," she said, pulling her sleeve back down and folding her arms, "I guess I don't."

"Okay. Who's your emergency contact?"

"No idea. I don't think I have one."

"Alright. Date of birth?"

"February 11..." Synapse thought for a second and tried to come up with a year of birth that would have put her at right around the age range she looked, but because she didn't know how old anybody really was here, she decided against guessing without information in case this would become permanent somehow. "Not really sure on the year. Sorry."

"Okay, we can figure that out later. Who is your insurance with?" the EMT prompted. What the hell? This habitat has backups, but no basic anti-aging mods? Or do people consciously choose to look aged? Oh, wait, I get it - this is a re-enactor habitat of some kind.

"EgoSure Platinum," Chelsea mumbled, giving the name of one of the front companies Firewall had set up to help route backup insurance to Sentinels.

"What? I've never heard of that one," said the EMT. "Could you say that more clearly?"

"I don't know," Synapse said. Okay, I think he's realizing something's up with me. This could end very badly. Time to go for broke. She reached out and touched the back of his hand, hoping to establish a psychic link. "Look, I'm sure I'm fine," she said, trying to plant the thought into his head that she was fine, and he should let her go and act like there was no one here when they arrived. "Can't I just go?"

"Yeah, uh, sure," the EMT said. "Just, uh... try and get your info sorted out."

"Thanks," she said, as she stood and left.

Okay, so I'm not getting out of here any time soon, and I'm not any closer to figuring out what's going on, but at least now I know what I'm working with, she thought to herself. Time to get some answers.


(OOC: I'm going to wait for a bit so someone else can respond.)

DivineWrath DivineWrath's picture
OOC. Sorry folks. I wanted to

OOC. Sorry folks. I wanted to write this up sooner, but things got in the way.

I'm currently assuming that you get to have stuff. Waking up with just your clothes might be how some people show up in this simulation. My character is going to have a little bit more since his skill set is focused on computers.

----

Mark was having the most strange sensation. He knew nothing like it. Everything was a blur. Words were like faint echos. Focus. Someone's touching my back, pushing back and forth.

Mark raises his head. You could see from his face that he clearly doesn't know what the fuck is going on. Out of focus and dumbfounded. There was even a little bit of drool dripping from his face.

He still wasn't able to focus. He tried speaking to this lady. "Who?.. What's going on?". He heard nothing. He rubbed his head and then heard a faint "Sir?". He looked at the lady and he heard "Are you alright?". He replied "Yeah I'm fine. Wait no, reflex. Things are not great." He then tried to stand up.

Pain. That was easy to focus on. Now why was he in pain? Did he fall to the floor? Why did he fall to the floor? His mesh avatar had its settings tweaked as to prevent that. He floats. If he wanted to fall down, he'd would have picked a synthmorph with 2 legs. A synthmorph so that way, he could turn off the pain when he wanted. He asked himself "Why am I still in pain?". He gave the mental signal to his morph to turn off the pain.

He asks himself "So how did I get here? What was I doing?". He pauses for a moment. "I don't know...".

After a few moments, his face turns white as he shouts this word "LACK!".

He panicks. He rushes to sit up and pushes himself away from everything he sees. He quickly bumps into the wall. With his back to the wall he looks around trying to survey the terrain.

The lady is now a little freaked out too. She tried waking up a sleeping customer. When he started waking up, he looked like had a little too much to drink last night. That bit of drool on the side of his face and a small pool on the table convinced her of that. Him falling down, not a surprise but it did make her a little concerned as it must have of hurt. But then he totally freaked out. He was now with his back against the wall twiching more than a squirrel on heroine.

Thoughts were racing in his head. Lack, mind hacking, ego stealing, etc. He likes living inside a fortified server. They're secure and have good simulspace options. Something really bad must have happened if he is not there.

She spoke "Sir! Are you OK?". He replied "How the fuck am I OK. Where the fuck am I? How did I get here?". He stretched out his arms to reinforce his point. She just looked at him. She then said "Sir! Are you OK? Want me to call you an ambulance?". He replied "No! Tell me where I am and how I got here.". He pulled his arms back before stretching them out again in the same gesture.

An awkward pause. He spoke once more "Just answer the questions! Date, time, location, anything!". His face showed great frustration. She said "I'm calling the ambulance. I'm not trained to handle this.". She then walks over to the front counter and pickups a black object. He said "Hey, don't ignore me..." while stretching his hand out to reach her. No matter. She wasn't being much help anyways.

Annoyed, he goes back to trying to figure out whats going on. He makes the mental commands to access his mesh, to run quick diagnostics, to make mesh querries, to check his email and media accounts, and to wake up his muse. Nothing. The pain was getting annoying so he made another command to turn off the pain.

Before he could think any further, another person tries to talk to him. He said "Are you alright?". Mark was getting quite annoyed. He replied "Stop asking me that. Give me some data that I can work with.". Another pause. The man then said "Are you mute?". Mark said "Ofcourse not, why aren't you listening to me?". The man then goes and does some gestures while talking. It was evident that he was trying to use sign language. "My name is Roger. I'm trying to help. Are you OK?". Mark didn't understand the sign language, but it clear at that point that they couldn't hear him.

Mark coughed. He hated biomorphs. He was coming to the painful realization that he might be in one. He was one of those AGIs that were produced by randomizing some attributes and then put into the whole socialization process. He did not take to it well. He always reasoned that it was more productive to communicate via mesh. You could reach everything via the mesh while your voice's range was limited.

Thinking about his cough make him realize his problem. He didn't like it, but he needed to try to moving his mouth and stuff.

He coughs once more before moving his lips "Zero.". Roger looks at Mark and says "Pardon?". Mark speaks louder "Am... I a zero?". Roger says "Zero?". Mark says "Who... zeroed me?".

Roger "Zero? Is that a name for some sort of street drug?"
Mark "No. It means not having mesh inserts or an ecto."
Roger "I don't follow."
Mark "The fall. The TITANs. Planet Consortum. Uploads. Resleeving. Any of these ring a bell?"
Roger "I uploaded a picture of my breakfast to Facebook today. The rest no."
Mark sarcastically says "This day is getting better and better."

Mark tries to stand up, bracing himself against the wall as he does so. Mark doesn't like biomorphs. He doesn't like physics either. Falling down hurts. Digital life let him skip all that.

"Let me help you with that." said Roger. They get to the table that Mark was sleeping at. On the table there was a spilled cup of some dark drink and some sort of computer with a wire going to the wall. Must be for secure wired communications. Was this for him?

----

OOC I think I'll stop things here. I might be making be making this character a bit too loony. What do you guys think? He is not happy with his situation, I'll tell you that much.

GenehackedGynoid GenehackedGynoid's picture
(OOC, reply to DivineWrath)

(OOC: That was actually really good. I mean, if I were a completely real-world-naive, machine-facing AGI, I don't know that I would have handled it even remotely that well. That said, it's probably worth figuring out whether or not we should have characters run into each other, or just have them continue muddling through the world in parallel. Maybe we could use some shared characters as intermediaries.)

DivineWrath DivineWrath's picture
OOC. I'm glad you enjoyed it.

OOC. I'm glad you enjoyed it. I thought it was too good to just keep to myself.

On that note, I haven't decided if I want to keep doing this. My previous post might have been one time thing or I might just need another moment of inspiration.

TheBurn TheBurn's picture
Q&A

GenehackedGynoid wrote:
Is everyone who shows up here made humanoid, or do they stay in their original morphs?

I'll allow you to handle that on a case-by-case basis. A neocetacean might not have such a very interesting conversation with paleocetaceans, but it is allowed. The one true limitation is that you cannot enter as an infomorph because 2018 computers could not handle infolife.

GenehackedGynoid wrote:
It's probably worth figuring out whether or not we should have characters run into each other, or just have them continue muddling through the world in parallel. Maybe we could use some shared characters as intermediaries.

It would be alright if they interacted as long as both people are alright with it.

Picture of Fire taken under CC0 license. (That's the correct syntax, right?)