Every now and then, usually with bioluminescent algae blooms or unusual news about quantum computing, I’ll make a post here from the so-called “real world,” which is increasingly “ClownWorld,” to illustrate something about the future history of Machine Civilization.
With the current unpleasantness between Russia and Ukraine, there has been talk in the past few days about Russia and China working together to evade SWIFT restrictions. With India’s recent abstention on a vote in the UN General Assembly, it makes one wonder what is really going on.
Building on last week’s post about a machine or tribe of them made in China, I thought to address the nation-states of my future history. I break them out as “Failed,” “Floundering,” “Polar Alliance,” and “Other.” This is one of my longest yet, eighteen minutes, as I have to circle to globe to get everyone in.
As I say at the closing, if anyone has questions or comments or wants more information about what I’ve mentioned, please let me know in the Comments.
A listener posited the question: what if one or a tribe of the machines had been coded in China; communist China. As a DayJob colleague pointed out “you cannot order a bubble tea in China without it going onto your social credit score.”
What would that imply for an AI? I pursue that question. I think it would end poorly.
Who doesn’t love a meeting? Besides, that is, every normal person on Earth? Still, no matter what form of government you have, consensus among those who actually run things is critical for longevity of the oligarchy. And all governments, everywhere, are oligarchy.
In this first part we find Faustina’s success in Savannah to already be destabilizing to the powers-that-be of Greater Knoxville. The issues here are internal. Part two, this weekend, will be external. I wasn’t sure where our main character was headed, but out of the mouths of babes, little Aurelia had it right back in the latter parts of “Princess’ Crusade.”
Been chewing on the legionary awards ceremony for days. This morning – sober, even! – I saw the answer: my typical terse style. Rather than put the reader through the hundred or so men coming forward for awards and promotions, all that happens “off stage” as it were. What we see is Faustina’s address, where she at last pulls back the curtain on what sort of political arrangement she has in mind for the territory she considers to be her own by right of conquest. This is going to have ramification back in Knoxville I cannot begin to see.
This marks the end of the raw manuscript that will either be Part One or Book One, at just over 56k words. Right now I must devote the coming weekend to implementing the copyedit changes proposed by Stephen Zimmer for my short story collection. And it still needs a cover. Busy, busy…
Faustina gives Wei a precis about ‘the machines home,’ the virtual world that dates back to the opening pages of my first novel, The Fourth Law. After that, Fussy’s relief is palpable when her godmother finally makes her appearance but as human minds are easily stressed in such an environment, it is soon time to go.
The little bit at the end, about Fuzhou, surprised me. I really do wonder if there’s a blood connexion between them. They’ll let me know if they want to, I guess.
After this – for my two days off this week – I’m going to try two big speeches: the first is Faustina to her senior centurions and the second to her assembled legions. I’m pretty sure about the former but the latter is still in fog. Praying for a clearer sky.
Not entirely sure if I’m sneaking up on the ending of what will be at least two books about Faustina or just the end of the first part of the longest novel I’ve ever written. We shall see.
Said part or book conclusion will be Faustina’s award ceremony for her army. I have already heard a few bits of it. “Land and titles” echo around my mind. She is not just conquering land, she plans to colonize it with young men and women from Greater Knoxville. And loyal to her, personally.
But first, she needs a venue. And right after that, to overcome a language barrier, she takes Nurse Wei to her godmother’s home.
Faustina continues her tour of the POW camp and meets someone unexpected. Afterward she and her legates head north to take a look at the Port of Savannah but find that to be too dangerous in the evening. Time for bed.
Over 3000 words this weekend! And it’s only 1300 on Sunday! A total of 51k so far! Where is this story going? Won’t someone tell me?
Faustina returns to Savannah to find out all the little details of what’s going on and what needs her attention. A fly-by gives her an overview. Right after she receives something not heard on Earth for a very long time… and guaranteeing her triumph. But she understands her most important task: “take me to the wounded.”