Maplespring

Themes

Sleep Therapy • Arcologies • Bio-engineering • Superorganisms

Organic Computing • Monads • Connectionism

No one in the AB23 memory lab woke up one Saturday morning. There wasn’t anything wrong with them or the equipment. The day timer functioned normally, but they just kept sleeping. The nocNurse rolled around frantically trying to stir it’s wards awake with an aural arsenal of alarms but they remained in some kind of slow-wave stasis.

Most mornings everyone would climb out of their tubes, hop in the dirtBurn and slip down to central for a fresh brew and a walk through the garden, but one day a whole section of the arcology was stuck asleep.

*

The memory labs served an important function in Maplespring. By the year 2041, most people had developed such debilitating attention deficit problems, that pharma-therapy and implants were just not viable solutions anymore. New sleep therapies were developed that had a powerful and interesting side effect. Over time, people could learn new skills and perform complex tasks as easy and effortlessly as breathing or walking. This was especially beneficial to the arcology, where sustainability, productivity and livability in a contained urban environment required citizens to contribute at a high level of intellectual and physical function. The population would rotate through a memory stabilization and learning programme through their sleep cycles at least once a week in order to strengthen and improve their implicit and non-declarative memories. Almost everyone could do many things at once. And they did.

Solutions to problems were quickly dispatched. Analysis and optimization were second nature. Future speculations were easy to generate, plan and execute. The Maplespring arcology was a best in class example of a progressive, modern city by 2059.

*

The doctors and medAssists arrived in AB23 and noticed that all fifty sleepers had synchronized their delta waves. They were collectively displaying the same patterns and emitting identical frequencies. Efforts to pull them out of their deep sleep were unsuccessful.

Four day cycles later the sleepers awoke without incident. They seemed perfectly healthy and happy. They returned to their regular activities after a thorough examination and were advised to take a break from the memory lab for a few weeks.

In the following months, there were similar incidents in CR67, GW20, and DL74, but no one could identify the cause.

*

Maplespring, a 500m semi-organic structure in north-eastern Ontario was a specialized arcology. From the outside you might mistake it for a mountain built into the landscape. Inside was a self sustained ecosystem filled with vegetation, birds, insects, fish and small mammals. In addition to food crops, Maplespring grew barley, hops and grains for the brewery. But perhaps the most interesting and critical ingredients were the new strains of yeast that were developed over the last few years. Through genetic augmutation new brews were customized for individual consumer palettes. New organisms were created to use other compounds for energy. Some flourished in acidic environments, some were attracted by electro-magnetic flow, some were were created to secrete lysergic acid diethylamide. The bio-manufacturing facility in Maplespring was home to thousands of hybrid strains of saccharomyces cerevisiae.

Inevitably, some of these strains escaped the lab and became wild bastard colonies that inhabited the arcology with the rest of the flora and fauna.

When the engineers started to upgrade the memory lab bio-synth neural network they uncovered an anomalous mass that had attached itself to the low level system architecture. This network tumour was growing and had been disrupting the sleep learning routines.

A particularly aggressive rogue yeast, attracted by theta waves had infiltrated the self-organizing bio-interface and started reproducing while people were sleeping. Over-riding all scheduling protocols, this voracious meta-organism fed on peoples dreams until it’s collective energy was exhausted and went dormant allowing the program to reset.

The new dreamYeast was eventually used to rebuild the memory lab systems in Maplespring. The self healing, self-optimization and self-protection qualities of the new organic computing network proved to be more dependable, flexible and safe. Eventually the arcology adopted the new yeast based architecture as their standard for all operations.

*

The population of Maplespring continued their memory lab practice and used the dreamYeast phenomenon as a catalyst for future research into new mutations. Discoveries like brainMolds, skillWorms, and luckBugs begat even further innovation. The arcology was in transition and a new superOrganism was emerging.

Over the next decade, the hyper-intelligent collective of Maplespring propagated and developed tentacleCities throughout the region. Each new community specialized in the creation of new resource development. Products were ordered and shipped all over the world by ultrafast photon sled. The city that once was, became the seat of great power and influence. The world looked to Maplespring as a fount of innovation and creativeTech. And though the citizens enjoyed a high level of self satisfaction, they still liked to drop down to the park for a breakfast brew and a stroll through the garden.