Part 6 of 6. Lee returns to earth and lays low for two decades. Cult villages emerge without being clear who is behind it. Panopticon drones are falling down over the North Sea and Jersey. Flat charactered and at times with naive exposés by the protagonist Lee, all in all this was a series with some interesting exploration of VR/AR, and the various evolving consequences it might have.

Part 5 of 6. Protagonists Lee and Nemo work from Mars with no legal way to return to earth. They also don’t quite fit in. The discovered life extension elixir means that the stranded pilots may return to active status despite already having too much cosmic radiation absorbed. Someone starts a rebellion against Lee and Nemo, yet can’t be IDd. An always on vr conscience is introduced but is a paranoid bully.

Part 4 of 6. En route from the moon to Mars three storylines play out, one on Earth with a mysterious rogue statelet on the Isle of Man, one on board the transport to Mars and one on the rogue shuttle with a team of ‘exodenizens’ (virtual characters downloaded into autonomous stillsuits) on board who don’t realise they’re outside their simulation.

In reply to AR/VR Headsets Continue Decline as VR Sets Plummet commented on by Stephen Downes

Seems to me one issue is right in the quote at the end. If you say that in 18 months my now new $3500 device will be obsolete, how do you expect mainstream audiences to fork that kind of money over? Even with compelling use cases, should they exist, that is an unconvincing position. It’s nice that compelling AR/VR is right around the corner for the mainstream, but it’s been a proximate future corner for two decades already, a corner that keeps moving away from you as much as you move towards it.

Even the AR/VR headsets arriving as early as 2025 will make today’s headsets look quaint.

Ramon T. Llamas, research director for Mobile Devices and AR/VR at IDC

Enjoyed this one by Karl Schroeder a lot. A fun extrapolation of “not your keys-not your crypto“, set in a society in ecocollapse with AI automating most work, institutions both public and private holding on to their assets while they disappear and crumble, surveillance everywhere and everyone bumping into the demands and constraints of the planet’s carrying capacity. Will explore his other books.

Schroeder is a futurist and writes for clients as foresight consultancy.
Reading it made me ask a number of questions, around the development of AR/MR glasses, specific aspects of crypto and smart contracts (also because of its role in the book I read right before this by Suarez), reducing the cost and increasing the scale of sensors in the environment, and gaming and virtualisation. I’ve jotted those down during reading and started exploring.