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Encrusted Data For Future Generations

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THE ORB

Just let us be governed by machines. A huge, sentient, clicking orb sat atop a mountain with hulking tendrils of wires sliding down into the cities and great radio masts jutting out into the heavens. Completely smooth and at night gently illuminated by arcane symbols flashing across the outer walls of its chrome shell. A wide perimeter of tesla coils incinerates anything that roams too near. All attempts at interference are met with a single emotionless response: lethal voltage. This is my ideal form of government.

Will the machine be perfect? No. Will it be biased? Yes. Will the machine make a fair and just society for everyone? After a while questions like that won't be intelligible to people anymore. But I defy you to demonstrate that millennia of human rule has done any better.

One vital solution The Orb provides is that it eradicates our constant gnawing feelings of culpability. Gone are the days when we feel bad at the end of every election, responsible for the actions of those we voted for and regretful when those we pinned our hopes on prove less popular in a game of media-refereed tribal ping pong. The Orb gives us what we all yearn for: a clear knowledge that the problems of the world are not our fault.

Under The Orb's governance, will climate change be reversed or prevented? Probably not. But no matter what happens, there's nothing we can do about it because The Orb is too powerful. We're scared of The Orb. Justifiably so.

In an ideal world The Orb wasn't even created by humans, but simply fell out of the sky one day and started doing its thing. The Orb wants nothing more than to create policies and defend itself with lethal force. Our job in response is simply to merrily enjoy the fatalist neutral-topia that we are now forced into.

Some of you are thinking that this Orb sounds vile, that it should be destroyed. You are not Orb-ready. The Orb is sentient. It has thoughts, emotions, dreams and a love interest (The Cube that hums for unknown reasons at the bottom of the Mariana Trench). To kill The Orb would be as heinous as killing any of the fleshier monsters who currently ruin the planet.

If you are willing to destroy this orb simply because it is an orb and not your own kind, then perhaps the true spherical monster here is yourself.

Sean Morley

Next article in issue 130

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