Category Archives: Status Updated

I Got My First Headset When I Was 15

I got my first headset when I was 15. I wasn’t the first at my school, but it was still pretty early, it all sort of came in phases. At first it was only the rich and powerful who used them; they did complicated transactions and required lots of data all at the same time.

Most people went without a set for the first couple of years because they were expensive and a luxury. However, as time passed, it became a necessity and soon people without headsets couldn’t get anything but manual labour jobs.

At some point they started using headsets in the schools. The idea was that it would help students learn more about the topics being taught. They could see relevant pictures and links, watch videos, and investigate every detail. There were apps that could record spoken essays to text and submit them to teachers for marking. People weren’t reading anymore, but there were a few people who kept at it. For the students that grew up with them, there wasn’t anything but them.

Mine wasn’t for school though, I got it earlier. It mostly had only video conferencing and some other basic stuff. True emersion came later, mostly in the advent of high-graphic games development. The original headsets were the biggest. They wanted to cut out the natural light and focus on close up video vision, but that ended up being over evolved as advanced lenses became more common.

The first sets were like glasses. They looped over your ears and projected an image onto a glass lens in front of your eyes. We would watch through the glasses and see our friends sitting around the room, but looking at the edges there wasn’t anyone else around.

Headsets were a result of the evolution of the cell phone. Everyone had one so data services become more efficient and carrying around a brick didn’t make sense anymore. Everyone wanted a continuous connection to their content; it put everything in life back into order. And it become hard for most people to to take off their headsets. For me, I made a habit of taking it off at night, I wanted to remember the real world.

Most of the stores in the mall now catered to digital devices. Food hadn’t been the same since it was primarily created and served by machines.

Technology had become so much more modern now that most people only needed small ear pieces. The projection was external but had something to do with string theory. Images would be spaced in the space just beyond. Everything was to scale and colour, but there was always a digital feel.

Things looked the same but never felt real and that was what things had become, a digital representations of what was supposed to be real.

Ready my short story: Korean Affair

No Time For Coffee

It was way past three am and I couldn’t sleep. Every time I closed my eyes images of digital landscapes filled my mind. Everything was digital and a representation of what existed in the real world, but it was hard to know, I hadn’t seen the real world in years.

Everything was filtered, in the olden days they called it augmented reality, but today it was something all together different. There was so much data, it was often hard to comprehend what was right infront of my eyes. A building wasn’t just a building, it was a world of context.

The next morning, walking into the subway station the walls were covered with digital signatures, my ‘friend’ Josh had passed through here a couple of hours ago. He was on his way to work, the digital footprints he left suggested that he was in a rush and didn’t have time to officially check-in. There are also route-maps and schedules at every turn, sometimes they are even predictive ….. ‘The Red Line is running slow today, YOU should consider an alternative route….. we suggest you take The Blue Line to Watson St. and then transfer …’

Once I saw this strange painting, it was a skyline of sorts with vivid monochrome textures, it was on the wall of some club I visited. Since then its been in my favorites list and has started showing up in my display. Its always in a awkward location or just out of full sight, but it’s there, just like those ads for Coke-a-Cola Classic.

Mike’s update has made a real different, everything looks more fresh.

I’ve never been to Watson St., so instead of transferring back to The Red Line I head up to the surface to take a look around. The sun is bright and it reflects off of the buildings, they appear white in my display. Data is starting to be filled in. There is a massive note on the building across the street, it’s where my dad worked before I was born. Slowly the building gained color as context was built on top. There were pathways leading to restaurants based on suggestions gained through insights from the last few restaurants we met at. My display informs me that I haven’t called him in a couple of weeks, his various contacts are scrolling across his old office building.

The building next to it is getting more meaningful, it was the scene of a bank heist almost 30 years ago, it was also where one of the movies on my favorites list was filmed.

I turn to look down the street but am notified via a massive stop sign on one of the buildings ‘You have a meeting with the CEO in 30 minutes, given current traffic conditions and your alternative route, please returning to the subways now.’

Turning slowly some of the building gain color as their insights are downloaded to my headset, being a new location they hadn’t yet been cached. I take a few steps and head back underground, almost as soon as I reach the track a subway pulled in and my headset informs me ’20 Minutes Till Meeting’.

Stepping inside, my display lights up. Apparently someone in the cart is connected to me through work, slowly his company profile is loaded up and the display asked if I want to ‘Initiate a Connection?’ I browse his profile and discover his rank is significantly lower then mine. The official policy is: don’t help lower class employees gain access to upper level executives without a ‘legitimate’ reason. I select ‘no’ and the profile is removed from my display.

I arrive at my station and get another warning ‘7 Minutes Till Meeting, No Time For Coffee.’

Ready my short story: Korean Affair

Those Cameras are Watching Me

Runny across the street I spottend a camera, it was following me.

It was hard to know when it all started, there was a time before the wall and the cameras, but the people from back then were either old and in a home or dead. They knew of a life before all of this digital ether came into play, but they were too delusional to tell us about it.

As a kid I remember seeing a story about a new technology that could be used to figure out who someone was and what they were going to do next. The idea wasn’t new, but the application certainly was. Not many people cared, most of them were having too much fun with their walls and headsets.

It was almost too coincidental, when I arrived at the shop the door was locked, the display, along with this weeks advertisements read ‘Access Denied’. I figured it was my commerce chip, it had been acting up lately. Looking up and to the left another camera had been following me.

Could they tap into the shops commerce system?

I banged on the glass, Mike turned his head and buzzed me in. Entering the shop there were flashing lights and monitors covering the walls and piled up to the ceiling. In the cases were piles of brick phones, every handheld phone was a brick these days. One of the larger monitors was displaying data from one of the city’s larger daily feeds, the context was lost on me.

Mike took one last hit from his joint and tossed it in the ashtray, he asked ‘What can I help you with today?’ I’d known Mike for years, but he still greeted me like we had just meet. He’d long since lost any human quality he once had, it might have been the drugs but a lot of people had lost their humanism recently, everything was always moving too fast.

I told him my commerce chip seemed to be acting up, he pulled out a scanner and watched the display light up. After a few seconds he paused and looked up at me ‘everything seems to be alright’. If it was working, why couldn’t I get into the building? The doors scanned for a valid chip then should have clicked open.

Mike and I talked for a few minutes, then he scanned my headset and flashed a new memory module. He scanned my commerce chip and it worked, nice how I could pay but couldn’t open doors.

In a few minutes I was back outside, the sky had darkened and rain was starting to fall, I rushed to the subways station across the street.

Ready my short story: Korean Affair

It Wasn’t Always Like This

It wasn’t like this before, before you could goto places without checking in, before you could visit friends without broadcasting it. There used to be a time when people went places because they wanted, not because they had to. Things hadn’t been the same since the lists started to be collected.

But the lists were just the beginning, there was always something else beyond them, something much more troubling and out of reach.

Most people didn’t know about the lists, they just knew what they could be used for. There used to be a time when you could go somewhere and have a good time, around that time you could also apply for a job and get it because you were the best fit. But now life had changed, employers always looked at the list, if you weren’t on it you wouldn’t get the the job. It was a new level of ‘social networking’, but we weren’t the ones that were social, our online identities were.

It all started after the world had crashed. It had existed before, but back then it was for fun, now it was a part of the real world, like a drivers license or a passport.

You couldn’t get in if you weren’t on the list, but to be on the list you had to be in the right place, which also required being on the list. It was a vicious cycle of self glorification at the expense of something much more important, something much more primary, something outside of the digital walls.

Ready my short story: Korean Affair