Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Idea for a novel

According to Moore's law, the number of transistors in CPUs doubles every 18 months. Personal computers, to say nothing of supercomputers, have gone from 92000 instructions per second with 4736 bytes of random-access memory in 1971, to 59455000000 instructions per second with 4294967296 of bytes of RAM in 2008 -- practically a million-fold increase in computing power within a single lifetime. This story is set in the future - a prominent entertainment company has simulated the human brain and basic sensory functions, over 10^10^11 trials in a simulated theatre environment, playing every possible movie from lengths of 90 to 180 minutes. The goal is to get as much money as possible, by making the most "successful" movie possible, without even hiring a single actor, director or cinematographer. Success is measured by the stimulation of certain pleasure circuits in the brain. Brains of corpses ranging in age from 17 to 59 were topographically and chemically scanned to give the simulators starting conditions encompassing memories, associations, and personality. The resulting movie was more than a hit. People /would not quit watching it/. They would go back and back in in an anxious frenzy, emptying their wallets and sometimes pawning off personal possessions to see the movie. People who had illegally obtained the movie for home viewing would become sickly and would not even take the time to eat. In both camps people were showing signs of addiction and even mild psychoses. Experts - the ones who were not too busy watching the movie - were afraid the society itself was going to collapse if something weren't done soon. The economy was already half way to being put on hold. Many theatres refused to continue showing the movie. The company was urged to pull the movie from all theatres, but they would not. And then..

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