Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Cyberpunk Radio - #100 - Tails of the Apocalypse

Post apocalypse,
Free Software(Fenster),
NarCeeCee and the Presidential virtual battlespace (DJ Defwheezer),
misc batshit,
World is a Ghetto (Geto Boys),
(I can't) Say No to Drugs (Dayglo Abortions).

Mechanico-cutaneous sensor gloves, electrodes gather feedback from the subjects’ brain cells. Sensors on the subjects ' hands, arms and legs track movement while mathematical models analyze the relationship between the subjects movement and activity in the brain's motor and sensory cortex. These signals are then passed on to a remote robotic battle system deployed in the field.

Neuromechanical remote sensing and control console. NRSCC (“NarsCeeCee”)
The original proof of concept model was bulky, not unlike a space suit worn by astronauts, and trailed a thick tangle of fiber optic cables which connected the kinetic suit to a supercomputing matrix. The ensemble he wore today in contrast felt more like the body armored business suit which had become the mainstay of his wardrobe since assuming the Presidency. Communication between the suit and the computer matrix was completely wireless, and the 360 degree virtual battle station monitors allowed submersion so effective, that even battle hardened veterans came out particularly hairy remote special ops reeking of BO and sweat and in need of intense formal psychological debriefing, despite never having been in any actual physical danger themselves.
There would be no real world remote ops today though, as the President selected “special ops simulation: Scenario Crimson”. Even though it was only a simulation, the familiar cold sweat was already forming a dark spade shaped shadow between his shoulder blades as the simulation loaded- when the monitors finally sprung to life he experienced the usual involuntary sphincter contraction. He found himself in the Situational awareness and command room aboard Air Force One, surrounded by his senior military and political staff, everyone’s eyes riveted to the main screen filled with a headshot of a masked woman who was speaking directly into the camera. Text scrolling along the lower half of the screen translated the woman’s words- but either the translation was garbled, or, more likely, the woman was on an incoherent anti-western screed.
The “Mystic Star” icon flashed in the status bar of his HUD, indicated the network was using a hardened backup military communications system. The president silently noted this and it’s meaning was ominously clear: primary communication systems were down, due to either power grid failure or high energy interference from nuclear fallout.

The voice of the SENTCOM operations command officer in Yucca mountain rasped in his headset: “We located the video’s transmission site in northern Pakistan and we’ve launched a submarine based tactical nuke tipped cruise missile to intercept.”

The woman on the screen fell silent for a moment, as if she had lost her train of thought, then stiffened, just before the screen went white with static. SENTCOM cut in again: “Target neutralized.” Hopefully that was the video transmissions’ origin and not just a relay station, the president thought detachedly.

The plane buffeting sharply, the screens flickered and several systems went into automatic reboot. “Another blast wave” intoned the pilot over the intercom, “looks like it was in the vicinity of Chicago, well behind us, thank god.”

“Do we know who’s hitting us yet?” the President asked coldly

“Best guess right now is either Russian or Pakistani based terrorists” said Condi in a haggard voice.

“Best Guess?!” He rumbled, “this’is no fucking time for guessing”

“Sir, I…”

“Never mind Condi,” he said more evenly, reaching out and grasping her shoulder. He could feel her trembling, and looking her in the eyes, saying softly “how long till we get to Yucca?”

The President didn’t wait for her reply, but instead invoked the “Pause” command.

The virtual world faded and he was left staring at the blackened monitors. He sat mulling the scenario. A full blown nuclear conflict with no certainty who started it and no clear idea who to retaliate against. He was jolted from his reverie by the clank of the Crisis phone, the flashing red gangling demanding his attention. Putting the receiver to his hear he could hear the voice of General Fallon “Sir, we must get you to a hardened bunker- there’s been reports of a large blast, likely nuclear, in the Los Angeles area.”

There are four things in the Football. The Black Book containing the retaliatory options, a book listing classified site locations, a description of procedures for the Emergency Broadcast System, and a three-by-five inch card with authentication codes. The basic options for retaliation are, to paraphrase, “Rare, Medium, or Well Done”.

Audio File
Length 22:07
Size: 21348723

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