Cities

From Visitors — A Novel

Long ago, the cities in the region looked very different. The landscape that the system was being built upon looked more organic, complex, and organized in a way that served multiple groups of people. There was cultural diversity, people lived in communities that made like-minded decisions. Even though people were beginning to accept roles from the Government, there was still a status for the individual.

Photo by Josh Rose on Unsplash

Cities were dense, they were unique. They were developed over time, which means they adapted to the environment. Culture thrived from town to town. Trade existed and people owned their own businesses. Materials were traded from region to region, allowing cities to expand and be connected in an interpersonal way. The complex systems of the cities created a fulsome life for people. They focused on themselves, they focused on the people close to them. Generations ago, there were families.

Families slowly disappeared with the development of the Government’s push for artificially created people. A process discovered through stem cell research and machine learning, the Government discovered a way to create cells to produce an unlimited, or limited, amount of people. The only thing they still haven’t figured out is controlling what is produced. There are still algorithms being tested to hone in what is being produced in the factories. Once families were separated and generations were created in the factories, people were finally just data points.

Along with people being generated, the Government was able to rebuild entire towns and engineer a system to create the most efficient opportunities. It was built on equality for all. It maximized the operation and work culture to benefit all people. At least, the Government campaigned for that perception. People soon didn’t remember the past. They did not have elders to pass down stories of the past. The Government won this self-prescribed battle to create equality across all groups of people. The culture was destroyed.

With these new, idealized towns being built, the Government was able to restructure society as a whole. They could separate people so that they lived in ghettos of similar roles and levels in society. A rating system was released to give people some type of authentic value in their lives. As the Government found holes in their system, they were able to create and adjust their system from the ground up. They could build new communities, new roles, and frame it all in an expansion project to benefit the people and the system.

Parallel to the development of the cities was the technology to run the system. People used to have personal machines with artificial intelligence. The A.I. learned about the user, it adapted with the user. The user was able to make choices and the A.I. changed with what they did. The Government knew this was giving each individual too much power. With the new rating system, they started releasing personalized badges to people, giving them an all-in-one solution. What they didn’t know was the relationship between human and A.I. was slowly being reversed. The A.I. started instructing people on what decisions to make. People got used to it, because of the innate laziness of this manufactured, efficient society.