Twin City Tunnel


Finally the much awaited insta-tunnel between Bahmko-Vale and Jadeko-Dale has been thrown open to the public. A journey which used to take 24 hours a century back, 8 hours at the turn of the century and 3 hours by the fastest Levito-modules is now reduced to less than 5 minutes. I am told it could have been less than a minute, but they are yet to control the heat dissipation caused by those speeds.

In order to understand how the insta-tunnel works, imagine dropping a heavy object from a great height, the heavy object emitting nitro-boosts and further large magnet at opposig ends attracting and repelling the object in the desired direction. Ok, I know, I made you imagine a large crater from the impact of the heavy object.

So, let me describe my experience in the insta-tunnel, and hopefully that will throw some light on its workings. I arranged for attending a conference in Jadeko-Dale as soon as I heard of the insta-tunnel opening. Reached the departure lounge where I encountered a group of hyper-enthuastic teens excited over their first journey in the insta-tunnel.

At the departure lounge, you join your module co-passengers - current capacity : groups of four - and get into your designated bubble-module. The bubble-module is all fiber, transparent, 360 degree view (somewhat wasted inside a dark tunnel). The bubble-module travels some 300 meters taking you from the departure lounge to the drop zone. The module is now dropped into a magnetic hold chute, which lands you in the containment chamber. From here on it is a suction vacuum ride of just a few minutes to cross a distance of 1587 KM!

Though objects can travel at uniform speed in a suction vacuum, care has been taken to increment and decrement the momentum to ensure least dis-orientation. That is why the five minute ride instead of the theoretically possible under a minute ride.

What made things move in a vaccum? Objects are supposed to float and not accelerate in vaccum. Well, initial attempts were focused on thrust or push principles. That was too energy inefficient to work. The Sail-Bots required huge space to move and were too slow. Back to the object I made you imagine. What worked was a combination of using gravity to provide the thrust, nano-netcells emission to provide the push and vaccum suction to provide the speed.

See you in Jadeko-Dale ...

Land Land everywhere .. not a yard to sow!

1st Sept 2051 -
Water was predicted as the resource which would trigger the next great wars. With 70% of known earth being water, I always doubted this axiom. Why would most of the mafias concentrate on grabbing more and more of land resources when water was to become the scarce commodity? Every don, rogue, politician, and people of similar hue were spending every waking moment dreaming up schemes to grab the next inch of land.
Pray, what value land, if it were to be used for it's god given purpose - to grow food to feed the masses? No sir, land becomes gold only with development. That is where we turned against nature and as we all know, nature scorned is nature infuriated. Now where was the largest opportunity? The largest swathes of fertile land available were in India, China, USA. And rightly so, these were the producers feeding the world's masses. As fertile land kept on being gobbled up in the name of growth and development, India and China in their blind race for world supremacy were the first to turn net consumers instead of producers. The US desperately kept trying to play catch up and hopelessly trying to regain its old glory, saw its big opportunity in 'green' energy - food as fuel. And so came the seven lean years which once again proved the truth of Malthusian economics.

Now, is today's headline the start of the seven good years? One is the attempt to once again conquer the seas and turn them into productive swathes of crop producing areas which came predictably from Japan. The technique is amazingly simple. They had already mastered the art of creating floating airports, floating stadia and floating fun-dromes. Now they have floating acres of land growing crops, insulated from the salty airs of the ocean by green-domes. These floating green-domes are monitored remotely and also contain water filtration cum irrigation plants. The surrounding insulation is covered with equal areas of planktons, mangroves and sea resistant plants while the core growth areas are multi-storeyed fertile land stores, yielding multiple crops. Now there is no fear of whether the rains will be good this year, since these floating green-domes are portable and can be towed to areas which are experiencing rain as and when needed.

The multi-storeyed part of the technology was first tried on land but was not so successful in terms of yield ratios. The main disadvantage of land based multi-storeyed plantations was that they needed an radius equal to their height to be kept open to ensure the lower levels received their necessary sunshine and free flowing air.

Post Script : A week after I wrote this, I found an article in the newspaper mentioning this very concept already being tested.

Xonic Revealed

15th August 2051 -

Xonics played a major role in how the recently concluded world council elections played out. I finally got myself the latest SQ-xon and blame all the hoop-la for giving in to this temptation. With this my conversion to xonet is complete and I have divested myself of all my old devices [well almost - the TouchTable still lies connected in my den].

As we all know, the origin of xonet is in the xanogranths. But before all the tech and the specs came the innovation. And that root is what we will examine today. For in studying our history do we get clues to our future.

The whole logic behind xanogranths is based on sharing of resources. For too long we had suffered the inefficiencies and impediments to progress of fettering resources to the major producers and providers. This had resulted in the quashing of all innovation which was inimical to the vested interests of the providers.

Xonet would never have become a reality had the concept of shared resources not caught on with the advent of cloud computing. And even cloud had its origins in the sharing of real-world (old-world) resources like cars, residential spaces, DVDs (remember those round shiny discs?).

People started realizing that they need not block their resources in things which would become obsolete in a few days, months or years. How many times would you see a DVD which you bought? Did you buy a gaming equipment to find an upgrade with higher storage available a few weeks later? Did you find yourself with one room less than what you need in your apartment after a few years? Do you find yourself envying the car in front of you?

The answer came in the form of providers who were ready to invest their capital and let you be the user of the best, the latest and the resource most apt to your ever changing needs. Apartments were the most emotional decisions of all to let go of, but once people saw the advantage of convenience in staying closest to their educational and career areas, SWITCHOME succeeded in breaking new ground and there was no looking back.
SharCars were pretty easy to sell when we saw that we could drive a BMW this week, a Merc the next and zip off in a Ferrari for the beach vacation. All this at the same cost we would have paid the bank for the next five to seven years in buying a sedan.

When this same concept was applied to the apps and storage domain, cloud computing was born. In a sense we went back to the dumb terminal concept of the previous century. Only this time there was no terminal to own also.
Just like apartments were dogged with emotional attachments, cloud was also hampered by fears of privacy, security, controls and again an emotional attachment to data. CFOs were loath to see their accounting data stored in invisible clouds instead of their ERP servers kept under vault like security.
It was only the great wars and economic shocks preceding the '20s which took the decision out their hands. With scarce resources and their organisations very survival at stake, they had no choice but to opt for shared resources.

The need to converge and co-exist with competing equipments became a necessity leading to Shared Specs and Unique Communication Protocol Support (SSUPCS) across technologies. The first commercially viable application was the WallScreen in the '20s where it was possible to simultaneously perform streaming, gaming and computing all with networking capability. The screen of course gave way pretty soon to the HoloProj which eliminated the need of screens for all equipment. (Luckily it was possible for me to upgrade my TouchTable with the HoloProj converter - one of the few old devices still around for nostalgic reasons)

Anyway, once the screen was converged, came the question of the viability of so many different equipments to connect to. That was what germinated the very idea of the xonic. With the discovery of nano-netcells and shared networking capabilities, Xonify was adopted by World Government as the technology of the future. The research was compiled into xanogranths (or xonogranths depending on which side of the Atlantic you are speaking to) and the specs were designed into the Indian Standards IS.X..509.w17

Published from my SQ-xon ....

IQ-Based Right to Office And Enfranchisement (I-BROE)

4th July 2051,

Finally I-BROE is adopted by World Government and is enacted into an international law. No world citizen with an IQ score of less than 130 will be allowed to run for office in world government and shall indefinitely forfeit his voting rights.

I will take a break from my old tech vs new tech rants this week. This is a movement too large not to comment upon. As you will notice my English also breaks in places as I struggle to put words to this historic moment for mankind.

The arguments in favor are very simple and basically the bare truth.

1. Running the simplest of machinery requires you to have the necessary qualifications. Why should it be any different for running world governments?

2. The same argument applies to who is entitled to choose the fine men and women who will be entrusted with wisely and astutely promulgating world objectives, priorities and standards.
It is just like asking - Who do you want running your HR department. Would you entrust a dork to run your HR and select people who will be working in your highly technical departments?
Well, in the same vein, why would you allow a person with IQ below 130 to decide who runs the government.

The arguments against are fatuous at best -

1. This will result in a select club of people running world government.
2. The lowest of the low has been left un-catered to and without representation.

Considering the numbers of population with IQ above 130, it can hardly be called a select club. The concept of a select club by itself is not to be disparaged anyway.

99% of world wealth has been held and controlled by 4% of the population for at least 5 millenia. And they have done a not too bad job of maintaining the world economy engine. No doubt there have been shudders and jerks along the way, but these wealthy individuals are not gods to foresee and mitigate every calamity. All in all, the economy has been kept on a progressive path and intermittent hiccups are to be treated as just such - necessary jerks to keep the momentum steady.

So now why not a select club of 5% intelligent people in whose capable hands lies the power to govern. (It is to be noted that the 4% wealthy and the 5% intelligent do not necessarily overlap)

And why should this result in the lowest of the low feeling unrepresented? Their fate is much more secure in the hands of the intelligent rather than one of their own fools, who rises to power based on sheer numbers, only to be slain at the hands of pride, greed or insolence. It is rather the economist, the scientist and the teacher who has the right frame of mind to govern in the best interest of mankind as a whole. Obviously they do not govern only to satisfy the needs of 5-9% of the population.

This momentous occassion also deserves the chronology of events leading up to it to be listed here. Might be a good lesson in history for all you know.

- 1912 - IQ tests devised
- 1914 - IQ tests of 1.7 million recruits carried out. (It is to be noted that 0.5% were dischaged while 3% would have been preferably discharged by their officers.)
- 2000 - Research indicates that IQ levels are increasing at the level of 3 points per decade on average.

There were various laws passed along the way to constantly remove the lumpen element from government. This is the culminations of all those efforts to finally get the world council on its way.

SolarPeds - Implications beyond commerce

11th May 2051 

The introduction of SolarPeds five years back was greeted with scepticism by the AWT industry. ToMa was the well entrenched global leader in all segments. The consolidation in auto industry which started at the turn of the century had been spreading like rapid fire across the spectrum of the industry which had historically been diversified across transportation means. And this consolidation had really paid rich dividends to the conglomerates.

Just a decade ago, ToMa had decisively won the round against world governments and succeded in overturning legislations it deemed harmful to the AWT industry. SolarPeds have changed the game and seem to be world governments way of getting back at ToMa. (Priority Entry to all public buildings for SolarPed walkers - WorNet News - 23rd Jan 2051).

Ironically, the origins of SolarPeds from Bahmko-Vale, was ushered in by ToMa's refusal to reverse the stoppage of hybrids production. The energy balloon crisis caused by the earlier version hybrids gave ToMa a ready reason to refuse to let go of its traditional production line of AWTs.

The events which favored ToMa and allowed it to rise to the heights of corporate leadership so far were constant reduction of input costs due to backward integration accompanied with massive inorganic growth from its policy of one M/A per month. The ten year ban on hybrids as a knee jerk reaction to the energy balloon crisis by world government played right into their hands and there was no looking back after that.
Till SolarPeds, that is.

The group of new-tech entrepreneurs working on the enhanced version of hybrids to help alleviate the energy balloon crisis, were on the other hand, caught on the wrong foot. They saw their entire life's research and venture going down the drain due to ToMa's stubbornness in protecting its traditional revenue lines. The founders of SolarPeds were among these unfortunates.
However, the last five years has really seen them rise literally from the ashes and it is no coincidence that their 2050 model was named Phoenix 1.0.

Deservedly SolarPeds is now the leading case study in all B-schools, which no management student can do without. The lessons for the new generation of tech-entrpreneurs are tremendous. After the ban on even new research on any enhanced hybrids, these two bravehearts actually looked back into the pages of history and picked up another failed innovation - that of harnessing solar energy and turned it into a roaring success.

The initial forays into tapping solar energy had been a massive failure due to the very fact that nano-netcells were non existent at that point in time. While xonogranths had exploited the networking capabilities of nano-netcells, Parth and Abid (founders of SolarPeds) realised the energy store capabilities which could be unlocked. This technological breakthrough was brought about by spraying x-rays on nano-netcells changing the nth structure of their microtrons. This in effect turned the network-enabled cells into huge energy stores.

What this effectively means, for the not so techie-inclined, is that the more SolarPeds there are on the road, the less energy you need to tap and store. Remember the success of cloud computing from the twenties? Well, somewhat similar.

What is most interesting about the success of SolarPeds is that most of it is based on concepts which are now thought obsolete or failed. Just goes to show what a lot of gold mines we have discarded in the past without extracting due value.
Will this now lead to a retro-rush for scavenging old tech? Let's see...

10th May 2051 - Xonic Revolution

Good morning world.

As usual it's wonderful to wake up with happy thoughts on the right side of bed. Just back from a morning jog. The average age of my fellow joggers keeps going lower every year. I am now statistically a standard deviation from the group.

Today's topic will be the xonic revolution that we have been a part of for the last decade. Well decade and a half to be exact. For the birth of xonic was indeed around 2035. We had the silent, early adopters among the geeks of Bahmko-vale, who took the technology behind xonogranths and in trying to use it in more and more ways, assimilated it into the xonic we know of today. For the techie inclined, xonogranths are now compiled into the Indian Standards IS.X..509.w17 [why they came up with that 2 dots system is still beyond comprehension of an old foggy like myself].
At the time of writing, .wq1`7 is still under debate, they say, and will really unfetter xonic for usage in outer space as well.

Right now, I am one of the dwindling population of die-hard fans of the old devices, though the rising costs (due to low volumes as per the providers) on the old devices and the obvious advantages of switching completely on to xonet, will force me to surrender my old devices sooner than I had expected.

There's no point waiting for .wq1`7 also for two reasons -
a. The squabble between Moagol and new upstart Sedna-Q is not likely to be resolved in a hurry. The control of space-waves is at stake after all, and both are determined their specs are included in the standard. Or at least it won't be resolved till both have successfully aped each other's specs and it is no longer possible to differentiate between a MG-xon and a SQ-xon.

b. The second more practical reason for not waiting for .wq1`7 is the fact that I am in no dashing hurry to have a vacation on a Moon-resort in the near future. Even if I do decide to go, I can promise you, I for one will not be missing my xonic for a moment. Even on Earth, I feel relaxed, just detaching it for a while. Really helps my meditation sessions, and I have been known to have been found lacking a xonic even on my morning constitutionals, which my group members - especially those born on the wrong side of the century, find unbelievable and implausible.

Having seen both sides of the century personally places me with a distinct advantage. Many such advances seem to have gone through similar cycles, and though for the younger generations, they cannot imagine how the world survived 10k years without xonic, for me this is one of the many waves we have been through since lightning was harnessed.

More later ....