In the 23rd Century parents still have that same old problem of getting their children to eat vegetables. In fact, many parents have the same issue themselves and its all to easy, even in the modern world to just focus the palate on the things that taste best.
Years of research have shown that no matter how many nutrient substitute pills the conglomerates make, people still want, and prosper best, from eating ‘real’ food. OK, a lot of the produce we consume isn’t as natural as it once was. Anyone who has seen a genetically engineered carrot farm, which has over 300 floors of so-called soil, would attest to that.
However, the fact is most health conscious folk, and the number of those has of course grown since the mass health-related deaths of the early 22nd Century, still want their veg.
Enter Cortex, the company that first gave us the scope to think our personal devices to do what we wanted. Derived from a long-standing collaboration with Yum-Tum Foods, Cortex has finally, with their MK-XXVI Essence chip made it possible for carrots to taste like steak.
In trials the consumption of carrots soared amongst 3-11 year olds and adults. The World Council look set to give approval for the roll-out of the so-called Carrack across markets. It will retail initially as a whopping 17 credits per portion. As a side effect the DisneyGates Corporation are reviving a popular children’s cartoon character called Bugs Bunny. In promotional aircast Bug’s is seen munching at a Carrak and saying the words, “Aww, What’s Up with this carrot Doc?”
In the 23rd Century, every public place has a full range of artificial intelligences (AIs) or ‘Droids’ that collectively perform a wide range of essential service functions. In some cases (e.g. a public MediDroid) the AI acts as a first line, dealing with minor ailments and sending on or transporting anyone with a serious injury or illness, to the nearest major major medical facility.
The busiest type of Droid in a public space is the SaniDroid. This ‘Jack of All ‘Dirty’ Trades’ effectively deals with anything that might make the average human struggle to hold on to their lunch, (assuming they’ve just eaten lunch). So if anyone throws up in a public space or the lavatories malfunction, a SaniDroid will be there in an instant. Able to clean both the facility, and indeed any individuals who for whatever reason may be less pristine than when they left home, the SaniDroid is pretty indispensable in modern life.
Manufactured, as most Droids are, by the AI-rU consortium, it is estimated that SaniDroid sales and service contracts account for over 75% of this major utility company’s income. AI-rU claim that over 90% of whatever a SaniDroid absorbs is recycled and used in the manufacture of a wide range of consumer products, though their spokesperson was reluctant to reveal which products……..
In recent decades, hornet-like insects that were first brought to Earth inadvertently from Siluria on imported rugs, have been progressively devastating the bee population on Earth. This has had inevitable consequences on key crop production as all attempts to control the problem with pesticides have failed.
A new growth company, BusiNeeds has come up with a solution. Artificial bees. The so-called ‘Buzzar’ is an AI or mini-robot that works just like a bee, landing on flowers and leaving with pollen sacs attached to its mini robotic legs.
The Buzzar not only works like a bee but looks enough like a bee to fool the Silurian hornets into attacking them. However, when a hornet takes on a Buzzar it gets more than it bargained for, as the Buzzar’s legs are flexible and strong enough to wrap around the hornet’s body and crush it.
In just completed field trials, not only was crop pollination unaffected by the presence of hornets, but the hornet population declined rapidly, whilst at the same time the natural bee population rose markedly.
Earth’s Supreme Court has ruled that the age of consent for Cortex’s thought assistant can be lowered to 11. This means that children can start Secondary Learning World with permanent Cortex implants in their brains.
Whilst the Cortex Implants will undoubtedly make the social elements of learning easier and more accessible, parents’ groups have already expressed grave concerns related to the addictive nature of Thought Networking.
Cortex is working on the development of Cortex adult implants that will allow parents to limit the nature and extent of the thoughts that their children can share. As the Director of the international parent support group 4Bear said recently, “It is entirely inappropriate for minors to hold private thoughts about their parents that can then potentially be syndicated across the planet. It is essential that children are limited in terms of the degree of freedom they have to share their thoughts unless these have been appropriately screened.”
It was in the late 21st Century when SkyPad first experimented with modular airborne housing. Done at the time as a response to overcrowding in parts of Asia, the early lightweight rectangular living modules were a great success. Despite some early issues associated with waste disposal, once SkyPad adapted processes for such things exploiting technology used by space travelers, this approach to dealing with overpopulated parts of the planet became mainstream.
For years however, all pods were identical rectangular units that could be fitted together to form a floating district. Each unit however could rapidly and selectively be disconnected from the whole for maintenance or refurbishment.
A recent collaboration between SkyPad and Duplo has finally broken the architectural mould for floating districts. People can now purchase living pods in a full range of colours and shapes. This means that not everyone now needs to live in an airpod with regularly shaped rooms. The Psychological Directorate for Healthy Living has applauded this change as a major step towards addressing a range of personality disorders linked to airpod sickness that can be associated with the bland regularity of traditional airpods.
When I went into space for the first time (that was to Planet Pzzxamix to investigate Trebor Snosrap) I was nervous about the whole toilet thing. Extra anxious and shy about such matters, I had envisaged I would spend most flights with all relevant sphincters tightly clenched until the journey ended and I could find a proper toilet.
How relieved I was (in more ways than one) to discover the Space SaniDroid. A sort of auto-loo that allowed you to go in total privacy even with someone else effectively standing right beside you. Shielding you from all potentially embarrassing noises and odours (whether the producer of such or recipient) the SaniDroid was every nervous ‘toileter’s’ relief station.
Of course, everything happens so much more naturally on a spaceship in the 23rd Century where artificial gravity has removed the weightlessness problems associated with excretion. So the SaniDroid has no need to worry about airflows, essential for early space travelers to ‘go’ safely.
The only possible problem with a SaniDroid is linked to unlikely power failure. That has happened to me once. All the lights went out and the body permeable door to the SaniDroid disappeared leaving me potentially visible to everyone whilst engaged in duties on my throne. All would have been ok though as with the lights out my modesty was preserved until Cat showed up with a massive torch……
Earth’s leading unicorn jockey has been banned from all competition for life by the Board of Unicorn Racing. A veteran with over 20 years experience, and winner of the Sinosovurean Cup 7 times, Peakoch was found guilty of riding with a prosthetic horn on champion unicorn ‘Thrust’.
Thrust, winner of the Sinsovurean Cup 3 years in a row a few years back, made a surprising comeback in the recent Legends 500 race. He and Peakoch unseated all 7 other riders in the first half of the race using the trademark ‘unicorn thrust’ that had helped to make them both champions in previous years.
In random post-race checks, Thrust’s horn was found to be 1cm over the previous maximum recorded length for race unicorns. Closer examination showed that Thrust’s horn was actually broken and that PeaKoch had procured a prosthetic extension to enable Thrust to race again with a realistic chance of success.
In mitigation, Peacoch’s Attendant AIs attempted to show that his only motivation was to see his favourite unicorn, so distressed by the break in his horn, go out on a high.
Shares in Cortex the World’s leading provider of Thought Assistants plummeted yesterday as news broke that the Government Thought Commissioner was investigating them.
Cortex marketed Intermix in late 2222. The basic Intermix unit allows users who have it implanted to manage multiple thought based conversations and collaborative tasks with others who have similarly implanted units.
A variation of the basic unit, IntermixPlus can also automatically back up a user’s private thoughts if they request this. It is understood that a ThoughtNet marketing company has been using harvested private thoughts to target promotions to users.
Cortex denies that any of their data security measures have been breached and have assured users that they have not passed on stored thoughts to any third party. It is expected that the Thought Commissioner’s investigation will last several months.
For years deep space travel has been limited understandably by the speed possible from current hypersonic engines. Despite advances over the last century that have seen increases in the speeds possible to up to 100 times the speed of light, the basic nature of propulsion engines has not changed.
Now through the use of engines that ‘shift’ time as they work it is becoming possible to move large distances in space in a fraction of the time currently needed. Preliminary experiments conducted by Time-X, working with the engineering conglomerate e-Madgin, have used the first so-called ‘TimeDrive’ to propel a crewless satellite to Alpha-Centauri in a matter of a few hours.
A spokesperson for Time-X said, “Early results are very encouraging though it will be some time before we can be sure of the effects of the propulsion methodology on the human form.”
Earth’s Grand Council recently ratified a new accord covering the use of artificial intelligence by arms manufacturers. The new commitment to ensuring that AI enabled weapons cannot act independently has been welcomed by all 4 major national blocs.
Both AmmoTel and GreenAid, the World’s two leading arms suppliers have backed the accord stating categorically that they will only ever use AI for clear logistical or training purposes.
The key element of the accord will be the establishment of a new body of weapons inspectors with powers to check and test any weapon in any country anywhere at anytime. The work of the inspectors will be enforced where necessary by a fleet of PeaceDroids developed in collaboration between AmmoTel, GreenAid and the 4 major national blocs…..