The vehicle convoy neared its target, metropol 9. Above it the thunderous noise of VTOL troop transports. The night sky glowed with the sight and sound of a million or so protestors all gathering below them in the densely packed streets. The sky now the color of red and black to match the faces of the protestors. The streets awash with the debris of last-nights fighting. Cars burnt, hotels and restaurants emptied, ransacked supermarkets. Everyone ignored the warnings. News had spread quickly about the government's attempts to evacuate everyone. And for this reason for this reason alone they stood defiant to the extreme measures being taken.
'People are strange, not entirely predictable. You would think that..' spoke Raddick. 'A million or so causes all pulling each individual in different directions yet all of them working collectively to bring about the same end-point, armageddon'. In response Carmella spoke, "You compare them to programs, Raddick, and they're not as simple." Carmel looked intently at Raddick through the lense device of his laptop. It partitioned his face, gave him almost the appearance of being human for a moment she believed he was. "Programs like this one you mean', Raddick's mechanical arm moved through the display highlighting the variance data used to compute ideal endpoints."A thousand or so of these heuristics is all it takes, logical entry points, decision makers. If one of these is wrong then the whole..."."I know what it means .... we lose and they win.",she replied. "Then you know why this is so important so crucial to the struggle.". "I am still human.." she stated. But for this remark he had no reply he merely checked himself and continued working on the program. Outside the violence was building, spreading and despite Raddick's best efforts to contain it he was powerless to stop them. They seemed beyond his attempts at reprogramming. Many had discarded their thought-machines, and so for the most part were off-the-grid. Many however weren't they could never be truly removed from the grid as like him they were the grid. Machines connected via organic and bioelectromagnetic fields and matter. While the grid remained intact they could never be quite free, but without it they would be lost. Perhaps this was mans destiny. Perhaps this was his truth. An explosion could be heard two blocks down, from Raddicks quarters. The extremist left-wing group known as the B11-people's movement. Referred to the B11 group encarcerated during a time when the government's attempts to control the so-called 'threat of terrorism' resulted in thousands of Eastern-block nationals known as the B11 group who refused to be part of the grid being locked up and deported. Many however never made it out-side of the UK. A hidden war had begun. Its victim's tragic tale illuminated for all to bear witness across the sky's holographic display subroutines. The sky had been harnessed first by the media powers to created advertising-storms, ionized particles that could be manipulated to colour gradients and densities some lasting for a brief moments but creating in the peripheral vision the desired emotive image's capable of influencing vast numbers of people. Later the B11 group hacked its way into the software that powered these event manipulation devices (EMD) and used it to display their own footage of the suffering endured by their people. The images endured as repeated routines where run on each EMD. The extension of this was of course that the cause was known was recognised its justice became part of the visceral awareness of the people. And yet this being good, better than trying to influence the people directly through television, the war over the minds of others took another twist as the authoritarian powers developed the technology to influence more than just the weather to change people's minds - they used more direct methods. This could not be countered by any movement, and rather would become the beginning of the end for control of the people. Outside Carmel watched the events unfold. Several SWAT teams engaged the rampaging crowd's. She added another opening in the dialogue between her and Raddick. It created a window on the events unfolding down below, at street level. In the window each individual was assigned a number of values coordinates if you like in the dynamic mind-space. The SWAT team some of its members had partial cloaks. They took a while to download and de-hack before they showed up. "Its going to take several minutes to bring everyone online..". "I know". "I'm getting most of the usual subjects, but these guys, some of them are Special Forces and you know about the difficulty in penetrating the MOD's shielded data". "I know" , she repeated herself. Thinking out loud she said, "They've got the fasted most powerful infrastructure for generating real-time bio-data but none of them knows how to use it.". "Well yes but perhaps that's what they want you to think, I mean how do you think they control them? ". "Experimentation?", she Ventured. Raddick continued his work, the display now showed the protestors in green, yellow and red with streaming numbers into the console. He waited a second, giving pause to briefly review the model and the changes and updates he'd made to the algo it was running before committing and pressed enter. The machine took-over. First it compared the behavioural patterns with known distress sequences taken from its psychological database- a history of reactive responses under hostile conditions. However this wasn't going to change the minds of the SWAT team that followed a hierarchical subroutine - command and control. For this the program simply downloaded the relevant command stats from a database disguised as a virus protection program. Kaspersky, had been hacked several years after its creation and was used for a while to create viruses that where later used to hack heavily-encrypted data held by the MOD. It passed most of the external security checks and had a reputation of a useful tool to prevent home-users from being inundated by advertising and Trojans. However its real purpose was to store and retrieve data on the government's cyber-control authorities and later as the military used mind-controlling software on all of its soldiers. It secretly spied on all EMD's used by the military. The software worked the crowd and the SWAT team was delayed just long enough for the crowd to be dispersed to another sector. Most of them had been relayed the fact of imminent danger. This tended to work quite well, however in some cases when the violence was too great or when many believed themselves invincible or most often when the protestors had taken to some cause that was worth even the sacrifice of their own lives, more drastic measures had to be taken and the list goes on all referenced on the database all pertaining to some form of persuasion in order to be controlled. Drugs, intoxication all were reduced to numbers on the icon following each individual on Raddicks screen. Psychological indexes dynamically showed what each individual's current state was and how he was going to react next. You couldn't go out there and inject them all with diazepam, but the mind-storm or EMD's could be emotive enough in the right ways to trigger neurochemical responses. Some even capable of translocating the self when it became necessary and the conditions were right. Down in the streets a mind-watcher walked through the city protected by his own projected image correction software. In the minds of passersby he became invisible - only just registering in someone's blind spot or peripheral vision. He was a ghost a feeling to most he didn't exist except in the fact that he could change the behaviour of anyone he happened to meet. They walked about wearing the most outrageous get-up. Carrying a mini-wave dish and aiming at everyone and veering to induce all manner of behaviours. One guy just stood there in the street forgetting who he was or what he was doing and simply proceeded to empty his wallet onto the sidewalk, and then walked away to find a cash machine. The mind-watcher simply knelt down and picked up the pile of twenty's. Taking it into the nearest food joint to sustain his appetite for fast food enhanced with bio-energised with neuro-active, and neuro-forming additives. Only the best, and yet highly addictive. (resonance arcade) Parasites were outnumbering people in a city overrun with every kind of new-age technologically enhanced crime. The only people who didn't prey on the innocent or the gifted were the MOD and the wealthy who rarely made contact except to issue warrants, or to advertise using EMD's. 'They're killing their own people'.. came a voice on the streets immune to the mind-watcher, 'Its a slaughter ...!'. Occasionally you'd see them setup on some street corner - psychotic's had an immunity to all forms of control, and yet under the right medication they could perform a service to the people all be it one they'd rather not know existed. Street-preachers often taken to trance or speaking-in-tongues engaged the public awareness directly and circumvented all manner of technological introspections. Occasionally they'd hit on something big and soon enough they'd be a black four-by-four private security group arrive and bundle the guy away never to be seen again. Raddick took a break and using his multi limb walking exterior ventured forth into the room adjacent his own. Sleeping wasn't a requirement yet for others it was a chance to refuel to fix and repair the damages caused by the EMD's that had managed to penetrate their enclave. Sarah lay in the bunk beneath him, he watched over her like some kind of arch angel his body in some vault his mind set free by the technology he'd helped create. He missed being able to breath, to feel like he once did with a body, to love. He still managed to love despite his affliction. She moved her head slightly against the holding device that channelled her thoughts into their natural vessel away from the world impinging upon them coming from all directions, parasitic and derisive in ways that were like a technological arms race. The vessel kept her insides safe while the machines updated her protective shell. He walked into the hallway and out into the stairwell. The door slid quietly open and then closed sealing the room he'd just left. He was immune being a machine almost entirely gave him the ability to think clearly without influence - machines couldn't influence machines only people. But he was a person, somewhere somehow he was still human trapped inside some technological prison underground his body sustained by liquid's and electricity. Sometimes he dreamt himself there surrounded by machines the horror was too great. Was he the only one? He moved crablike down the stairwell and through the arched entrance of this derelict building. All about lay the discarded remains of people's dreams, manuscripts, programs, idea's all litter about the street amongst the excesses of living in a world of parasites. Fast food wrappers, porno, and video cassettes strewn about. The air was cool and slightly electrified, he felt the em waves registering over his perceptive array as he emerged into the street. Some of these waves where motion reactive but needing a biological fix soon parted, he looked out and saw them as a repeating pattern of undulating waves. A form of weather yet unnaturally pervasive and totally harmful. This was the bad-lands only psychotics, breeders and machines could live here for any length of time before becoming something else. Hence the lack of authoritarian interest, this enclave was never visited and escaped introspection for this reason - they were safe. However that didn't change the fact that nothing lived here that could be vaguely described as human. This also meant that parasites though out-numbering the general populace stayed away unless there was something to eat. Occasionally someone or something would be revealed to them. The traces they'd left in each region would glow red indicating that someone had been broken by the waves and was ripe for harvest. Then they'd appear back on the scene like a hungry pack of coyote's scavenging for the last human remains in the repeating death of a city continually on the brink of nothingness. The authorities had no reason to expend time and money on conducting investigations beyond the occasional phone call or email. Surveillance was automated and not a requirement for regulating the people and/or subjugating them this was carried out by the parasites whose abilities although overtly condemned were effectively off the grid carrying license and legal technology. A permissive society for one group of people - the majority quickly became oppressive for another. No regulation meant self-regulation, people power they like to call it, by any other name it would be easy to say it was just another form of fascism. Perhaps it was the intention of the powers-that-be to allow a self-govern state ruled by anarchic parasitic like creatures to evolve thereby relinquishing responsibility of the state to manage the people. Nobody knew the answers and nobody cared. The states responsibility was clear, management was not something open to review and discussion. If it was it would only be to the benefit of those who did it, namely the rich and over-privileged. Some token idea of liberty could easily be brandished if anyone decided to state that liberty was at stake and liable to corruption. People were stupid they obeyed, they worked, they breed, and they died. Everything that happened to them and to anyone else caught up in the web of lies happened for a reason. People suffered or went through intolerable existence because that was the way of things, it reinforced the perception that those that didn't have any trouble where in some way chosen by god. Liberty wasn't the absence of control that was clear however it wasn't also the presence of control in Liberty's absence. Thend
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