We’re so intelligent now that we’re too smart to survive. We’re so
well informed that we lost all sense of meaning. We know the price
of everything, but we’ve lost all sense of value. We have everyone
under surveillance, but we’ve lost all sense of shame.
-— Bruce Sterling, Distraction
The changeover was gradual. Seeking control at the highest level,
acted as the exclusive financier of the political world. They became
too big to fail,
then hegemonic. Political power found itself replaced by economic strength.
All conditions were met to satisfy exclusively their needs. No more
law limits to their
strategies of concentration,
exploitation and monopoly.
From the evolution of multinationals,
have become the new way of
organization. A feudal
world emerged, built on the ruins of states and nations of the 21st century.
States were abolished, their roles and functions transferred to
corporations. A tiny minority were transformed into powerful
dictatorships able to compete economically and militarily.
Nationalisms are now corporatisms by nature.
Trade agreements validate and resolve disagreements. They are
coordinated and regulated by supracorporatist authorities If a win-win
situation for stakeholders is not found and accepted, then corporate
wars are declared. The corpos then battle on military theaters, on
markets and in the cyberspace.
Administrative and technical control systems,
have been greatly reinforced and deployed, enslaving the individual in a
constraining social system.
Megacities are formed
entirely of urbanized regions, divided into sectors. Among them
corpo-sectors citadels, fortified defensively and aggressively, the
ostentatious centers of demonstrations of power.
The notions of public
goods or public
services are outdated,
forgotten. Everything has value so everything is privatized and exploitable.
The world is subject to
cult brands and global
Everything can be sold. Everything can be bought. Everything is already
in the market.
A powerful and prosperous black
market provides what is
not available, authorized or accessible. It is also a place for product
experimentation. Successes in the black market later define the new trends.
Choices are endless, limitless. All
desires, conscious or unconscious, spontaneous or
are on the menu. Prices are fixed only by the supply-demand engine and
never incorporate the
paid by direct and indirect victims.
The most sensitive, strategic and vital market is the
In this age of communication, at the speed of electrons, information
circulates and can be stored everywhere — in data
silos, in the heart of
huge servers farms, in personal
in the [daily environment][approx] and embedded in the body, through
Cyberware. All these
facilities produce all the data needed to ensure the integrity of the
The control of information through broadcast networks and media is the
main vector of mass
Original [information][sense], secret or classified, is actively
buying, selling, leak
information is the job of a new kind of informants, the
With technology such as
humans are altered, repaired, modified, enhanced, improved — with
prostheses, implants, weapons, wiring, circuits, computers, amplifiers,
has made it possible to unite, to merge man and machine, metal and
flesh. This century is the rise of the
Surgeons must take into consideration, in addition to body
the psychological acceptance factor. The price to pay for the customer
can be heavy — cognitive
psychological disorders, insanity, loss of empathy, brain injury.
New synthetic drugs are designed specifically for cyberware — increased
reflexes, strength, neuronal transmission speed, acceptance capacity for
implants. Addiction and side effects are inevitable and destructive.
is fully used in
biometrics and replaces
fingerprints, all the rest being falsifiable.
The leading firms are
which produce and incubate implants. As the majority of the equipments
is produced by
their use is
order, these black boxes
against the wearer, spy him, interfere with his will or with its
personality to control him.
The first field to benefit from this technological
change is the
military arsenal who has been considerably diversified - assisted
mecha - robots, drones,
transport, ion powered
starships - directed
and many others.
The illegal market is out of control, not confined to any catalog, and
meanwhile offers a much larger selection of crafted, varied and
combine technology to create new forms of experiences. New areas are
celebrated — the virtual arts, the alteration of senses or personality.
Humanity has conquered and industrialized new territories: the
ocean surface and
its depths, the Earth orbit with stations and
orbital cities, the
close neighborhood of the Solar System with
terraforming on the
Moon and Mars, the planet Saturn with gas exploitation, and asteroid
mining in the
Kuiper belt. Economic
competition coupled with colonial privatization push corporations into
the stars with the creation of companies and concessions.
But there’s a whole other territory, a new space-time, which is the new
primary focus of attention.