NOTE: This is a direct copy of a piece I found in another iteration, one further along. By offering it here, I think I’m violating a few of the guidelines, but since I’m not trapped in one place anymore, I’m relatively safe from enforcement. At least I’m omitting the author information.
The hastily marketed memory templates really got people thinking. It turns out they were useless and I’m betting most of the early-adapters knew they were useless – but they brought so much hope. Just the idea that you could take the first step toward immortality by simply beginning to catalog your memories with highly inter-operable templates. Hilarious now, in some ways.
Even so, you can’t even find a good documentary or detailed history of the evolution to immortality without finding some mention of the memory templates. They were simple and they were inexpensive or free or kick-started or handmade… great varieties were created. Every data format, every method of data capture and storage. Later versions incorporated natural language processing.
Ultimately, the templates were not used, but they were not a bad idea. It just turned out that since electricity is what powers the brain and ones and zeros are just … well, 1s and 0s… It was just a lot easier to read the binary directly from the brain than spend all that time filling in the templates. Almost any neuro enhancement product (NEP) would get the job done a lot faster.
And let’s not forget accuracy. Everyone knows the evils of double entry or incompatible formats… but with the templates, people were starting to end their stories any way they wanted to. These were supposed to be their real memories, mind you… How many people actually pointed to the outfield before hitting a home run in a World Series, for example? Well, if self-reported histories were to be believed then no fewer than 1% of all Americans thought they were Babe Ruth. I’m not going to get into the politics of history here as I know most of you in your time don’t think it is the job of historians to be accurate so much as it is to substantiate a dominant culture’s point of view. I’m just saying the templates were not that accurate.
Why am I telling you all of this? Because I thought you’d find it fun to think about! I’m reaching back to tell you this simply because I can. I don’t care about the myths of your day regarding broken time lines and the cataclysmic consequence of one more dead sparrow leading to the rupture of the Cascadia subduction zone in 2016 instead of 2017. You don’t need to worry about garbage like that changing the future. Trust me, you have much more interesting things to worry about and to learn from. You’ve only just now proven that a living creature can be in two different quantum states at the same time. Clearly you’ve a lot to learn, forget, learn again, destroy and partially rebuild.
Once the NEPs hit the mainstream it will be a new level of class war. You still think the big one comes in 50 years and will be about oil or in 100 years about water… but it comes way before those. When people start believing that their allotted 77 years may not need to end then people start caring about their memories in very different, often irrationally passionate, horribly selfish ways. Many of these NEPs will be incredibly expensive… only a few thousand people in the world will be able to afford them (basically, in your 2030, only the same people who can afford a ticket for a short trip to outer space can afford to store their consciousness for permanent growth – so yeah, not that many people).
So go ahead and consider these memory templates. It will keep you pre-occupied for a few years, give you hope for a decade or so. For the short-term, you need to just really fall in love with the whole idea of the templates. They’re for everyone! They don’t cause mass hysteria about the haves and the have-nots. Basically anyone with internet access can get started scribbling down their memories. You need to enjoy this brief period of unlimited possibility for all. How many products in history turned out to be both useless and invaluable? Not to mention the boon they’ll be for your IT industry.