Anthony Repetto
Aug 14 · 2 min read

Blaring: “So tonight I’m gonna party like it’s…”

“WHOOO! Two minutes until the end of the world — whaddya think’s going to crash first? The Japanese stock market? Or did they already Y2K-proof?”

“I dunno. I doubt anything will happen… but computers, man, they’re going to do everything. This is the Singularity. Imagine what it’ll be like by 2020…”


“Whoa! You just appeared out of nowhere!”

“Not nowhere. 2019.”

“Holy shit — the future? Do we finally have jet packs?”

“Uh, actually, yeah…”

“Dude! And hoverboards?”

“Um, yes, in fact.”

“You’re shitting me! Flying cars?”

“There are a few companies…”

“And, like, in Gattaca, can you get someone’s genetic code sequenced by a drop of blood in a little robot?”

“Er, we usually just spit in a tube to do that…”

“Geez! So, computers are totally super-powered, by then, huh?”

“Well, we have computer watches, and wireless earbuds that play all the music on earth, and cellular phones that take high resolution video, play computer games with movie-quality graphics, surf the internet from a mountain top using weather balloons, you can just touch their screens, and… yeah, we all basically live in front of our computers.”

“Crazy. Artificial intelligence must run everything, then…”

“sigh. Yeah, it kinda does. AI unlocks stuff when it recognizes your face, it paints beautiful art that’s sold at auction, composes music alongside human ensembles, writes news articles, and it trades all the stocks on the stock markets faster than humans can respond, designs new drugs, materials, stuff like that…”

“So, is everything…fixed? Like, does that mean we figured it out?”

“Um, America has become a racist dictatorship, and so have a half dozen other countries. Donald Trump, the washed-up real estate tycoon, is president. Our economies dipped through multiple crippling recessions for the last two decades, and most peoples’ wages have stagnated. Russia is a mob that makes money from selling oil, weapons, and cybercrime, and they mess with everyones’ political systems. China is still communist, but it’s grown as large as the US, and we’re throwing the world into another recession by instigating a massive trade war with them. The whole planet is melting, and islands are sinking. We’re running out of fresh water. The super-rich are trying to escape to Mars.”

“Fuuuuck. Really?”

“…And there’s global terrorism, which is particularly worrisome because it’s now easy to create horrific bio-weapons, so everyone could be killed at any moment.”

“Shit. What do we do?”

“Help me build a time machine that can go back more than twenty years in one hop.”


where the future is written

Anthony Repetto

Written by

Easily distracted mathematician



where the future is written

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