Jan: Your asteroid mining efforts do have some skeptics from sustainability to possible impacts with the Earth due to changes in the orbits. Some of your competitors have suggested that the global organization, Lucy in the Sky, that you helped found is creating a rigged system that X Labs benefits from while others are setback by it’s government lobbying efforts. Still, across the globe, even your critics agree… your creation of the Star Fund to help offset lost jobs due to increased automation is benefiting millions.
Lysander: There’s nothing nefarious about Lucy. I’m just a Beatles fan. It’s an open source organization with all communication going through the USPEBL. All…
Jan (interrupting): For those not familiar with USPEBL… Sorry to interrupt… it’s the United States Public Entity Blockchain Log. It’s a system by which all communications are placed on a public blockchain managed and redacted exclusively by the United States government. It promotes transparency for organizations with a public interest.
Again, sorry to interrupt.
Lysander: I could not have said it any better.
Lysander is running through another simulation inside Earth 2.0 that takes him forward 100 years. He’s testing the limits of the simulation when he notices a major anomaly within the data access logs of the simulation. Someone, or something, has been attempting to access the DNA records that are used for uniquely identifying each human being now living within Earth 2.0 as well as the DNA records X Labs has been receiving as part of the asteroid entitlement program.
He sets a trap and waits…
Jan: Thank you. What do you say about the sustainability of asteroid mining?
Lysander: There are logistical limitations. We’ve detailed those in our reports to the necessary government agencies, and we have trained developing nations about the limitations to the exploits of asteroid materials.
Jan: After the repeated failed colonization attempts of Mars, where do you see human life expanding outside Earth? I mean, besides Earth 2.0, of course.
Lysander is sitting in his personal lab, about to take the serum so that he can enter Earth 2.0.
“Lysander.” he hears.
He looks behind him, knowing full well he’s secured the lab before taking the serum. He’s encountered strange side effects before during the waiting period of taking the serum and entering Earth 2.0, but he hasn’t taken the serum yet.
“Lysander!” he hears the voice louder.
He places the serum on his lab table and sits down at his desk and pulls up his communication logs. “Could it be that someone has hacked his encrypted nanobot communication system?” He thinks to himself.
This is the same system he used to control Dr. Tom Fields during the super vaccine trials. He built a safeguard into the nanobots to disable them and flush them from his body, but upon review of everything, he finds nothing to indicate the nanobots have been compromised. He initiates the flushing protocol just to be on the safe side and waits for his body to purge the nanobots over the next 72 hours, which is a process he performs once a month anyway.
Lysander: We’re going back to Mars.
Jan: Really? It’s been a repeated abysmal failure over the last 30 years!
Lysander: It has cost trillions of dollars and dozens of lives, but the value is still there. We will succeed in colonizing Mars within the next 100 years.
Jan: You’re saying within your lifetime then. Is that because of your latest constellation satellite system orbiting the red planet?
Lysander is lying in his bed at home, doing his bedtime meditation, when he hears the same voice from the other day while in the lab.
“I am here,” he answers back.
He opens his eyes and stares at his ceiling for a brief moment before he smiles, chuckles, and then closes his eyes and falls asleep.
The following day he goes into his personal lab and takes a dose of nanobots and then takes the serum to enter Earth 2.0. As he’s waiting for the serum to kick in, he keeps thinking “0266” over and over in his head until he falls asleep.
Lysander enters into his simulation in Earth 2.0 that takes him ahead 100 years. The simulation is now using the data available from the Mars constellation satellite system X Labs has placed around the red planet. With nearly half a Martian year worth of data, Lysander is now able to more accurately simulate conditions on Mars.
He begins running a series of simulations within his simulation in order to figure out the best method to colonize Mars, when he hears the voice again, “0266”. He smiles.
The simulations complete, and Lysander analyzes the data to determine the best scenario to follow for colonizing Mars.
Lysander: The constellation satellites are helping us better understand what will become home for billions of humans in the future.
Jan: And what about beyond our solar system? Your quantum entangled satellite system is nearing Alpha Centauri. Do you expect to find life? Or plan to colonize the habitable planets you discovered before sending the satellites? What does the future of human space colonization hold?
Fredrick Prophet tosses a file onto the table in front of Lysander. “Another one bankrupt, Ned!”
“I don’t think I have ever seen you this enthusiastic before, Fredrick. Should I be disturbed that you enjoy watching people fail so much?” Lysander chuckles as he opens the file to see that one of their top competitors in quantum computing has filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection.
Laughing, Fredrick responds, “Good thing we’re on the same team, eh! See you in the board meeting later quantum genius,” he says as he’s leaving.
Richard enters Lysander’s office and glares at Fredrick as he passes him. In turn, Fredrick gives him two thumbs up and a big smile. Richard passingly gives Fredrick the middle finger as he walks to Lysander’s chair and sits down in front of Lysander, “So, you saw Xeno’s belly up? I know a few guys over there worth picking up for our own teams.”
“Richard, when you go to bed a night, do you ever wonder if, or when, these other companies are going to figure out that quantum computing isn’t what they think it is?” Lysander asks his business partner.
“Not particularly, Ned, but I can see how that would be something that might keep you up at night. There are a lot of good people losing their jobs pursuing something that continues to remain a big mystery that we’ve already figure out.”
Lysander gives Richard a look of disgust, “The only thing we figured out is that existing quantum computing paths and technology is total bullshit and can be done for a fraction of the cost and resources with optimized classical computing.”
There’s a long, uncomfortable silence.
“Ned, you’ve never struck me as someone with much of a conscious about… Well, anything. You getting soft in your old age?” He smiles at Lysander.
“I’m being serious when I say this Richard.” Lysander pauses as Richard hangs on his words. “I’m going to setup a program for universal income for everyone on the planet when we finally start returning the RUBARB mining haul. I know Fredrick is going to be pissed, but it’s the right thing to do.”
Richard looks at Lysander with a puzzled look.
“What?” Lysander charges.
“You’re full of shit, Ned.”
“I’m being 100% serious, Richard. We’re changing the world, and I think it’s important to change it for the better!”
“Hey, I’m dead in a few months anyway, so whatever flips your pancake, Ned.”
“Don’t be like that, Richard. When you first told me about your repeating cancer, I started taking this kind of stuff a bit more serious.”
“Ya…” Richard gets up from his chair. “Total bullshit, Ned.” Richard heads for the door. “I don’t see why you can’t just tell me, your best fucking friend, who is dying of liver failure what you’re really up to.”
Lysander raises his eyebrows, “You done with the drama?”
“I’m all ears if you’ll tell me your real scheme,” Richard says as he turns back around and sits down.
“Okay, the plan is that we’re going to setup the entitlement program and use our patented DNA sequencing for uniquely identifying each recipient.”
Richard sits back in his chair, “That’s brilliant, Ned! You’ll have exact DNA data on billions of people! What you’ll be able to do with that data is limitless, but I’m still a no.”
“C’mon, Richard! Let me help you! With this, we can find a solution to your liver!”
“Not going to happen, Ned. I love you and all, but this is it for me. Please respect that. And don’t put me in your Earth 2.0 or even my own. It’s the end of the line for me. I’m out with this last liver, okay?” Richard looks sternly at Lysander. “This is it for me, Lysander, and I need you to respect that.”
Lysander looks downtrodden and nods as Richard leaves his office.
Lysander: I’m as eager as you to discover what’s next. The future is the greatest discovery. It will be important to respect any existing life that we might discover in the future, no matter how primitive it may be.
Jan: Should we expect to find life elsewhere in the universe?
Lysander: It would be naive to believe otherwise. Whether it will have achieved the level of intelligence and success as humans is to be seen.
Jan: So, you don’t think other intelligent life is out there?
Richard is lying in his bed with his armada or robots around him and Lysander as the lone human. Richard reaches his head out from under his blanket and grasps Lysander’s hand.
“I appreciate everything you did for me, Ned, now and in the future. Please tell my ex-wife that I hold no ill will against her not joining me today. I’m pretty sure it’s because she hates you more than me.”
Lysander smiles as his eyes begin to well up, “You sure you want me to turn off your system, Richard?”
“You promised me, Ned.”
Lysander begins the shutdown sequence for Richard’s nanobots that have been keeping him alive since his fourth printed liver failed. The consequence of running on the nanobots is that Richard has had to live in a confined space that can wirelessly transmit the needed electricity into his nanobots that consume more than 100 times the energy it takes a human to live.
Lysander looks Richard in the eyes as Richard begins to die, “I love you, brother.”
Lysander closes his eyes and a stream of tears runs down his face.
Lysander: It would be a pleasant surprise.
Jan: With Earth 2.0, some of the philosophical minds of the world have suggested that we’re just years away from discovering that this reality is, too, a simulation. I would imagine that in your research into Earth 2.0 you would have come to some truly educated theory about such an idea?
Lysander: It’s an idea that’s been kicked around since before the beginning of this millennium; both in science and pop culture. Anyone with a curious mind has likely pondered the very nature of our existence itself. All our research points to this reality that we live in being absolute.
Jan: And signs of a higher being or a God?
Lysander: I’d be naive to assume I have all the answers.
Jan: Your research has found nothing to prove one way or another?
Lysander: Do you mean do I hear a voice calling my name at night, giving me guidance and answering my prayers? No.
Jan: When we return from this acknowledgement of our patrons, we’ll next discuss the hot topic of politics.