Simon’s Backup Weblog


Immanentise the Eschaton with your new job!

Posted in Uncategorized by Simon Bisson on July 24, 2006

A job advert that feels like it came from the other side of the Singularity.

The project involves the “intimate fusion” of nanofluidic devices with autonomous insect cyborgs

[…]

A background in biology or physiology and experience in nanofabrication and ideally drug delivery is desired.

“Intimate fusion”? Wiring up cockroaches as spy cameras? Or building the bees and wasps that flit in and out of Queen City Jazz and Counting Heads? Still, it would make a great story hook.

Hmmm…

Title?

Hmm. We’ll leave that for a while, but here’s a flash fiction dump of the first few paragraphs…

Her coffee had gone cold by the time Judy finished today’s smartsheet. One tall latte, double shot and a shake of cinnamon. He’d learnt her routine by heart in the two years they’d been together. Still, it wasn’t boring – just predictable: Coffee, paper, and then she’d bug him about getting a job.

“Intimate fusion? Isn’t that your schtick?” she asked as she passed Tom the paper. “Looks like someone is wiring dragonflies and needs an experienced nano jockey. Didn’t you do something like that in your lab days?”

Tom grunted, took a swig of his coffee and looked down at the advert:

Bio/nano engineer wanted
Position: Nanoengineering supervisor
Organization: Correll BioWings
Location: Santa Clara, CA
Deadline: 09-01-16

Description: The Integrated Micro- and NanoSurveillance team at Correll BioWings is looking for a post-doctoral scholar. The project involves the “intimate fusion” of nanofluidic devices with autonomous insect cyborgs. Position is available immediately.

Qualifications: A background in nanosystem design, biology or physiology and experience in nanofabrication and ideally drug delivery is desired. Experience with Order Odonata nervous system augmentation and optical surveillance essential. Post Doctorate or higher.

Press here with an ID key to apply.

The advert looked like someone had read his thesis. And he had been looking for something better than hiding behind a Life2 avatar running tech support for home-sourced housewives and their earthworm mining companies. Tom tapped his phone on the smartsheet. It couldn’t hurt.

The advert vanished.

Then his phone rang. Tom tapped his glasses to answer. Instead of the expected face hovering over his coffee, he was dazzled by an array of images, an insect’s eye view of, what? He couldn’t quite tell, but there was something familiar there. It had been a while since he last looked through a fly’s eyes. You never lost the knack though, it was like riding a bicycle.

“Good morning Doctor Robinson. We’ve been expecting you.”

Then he realised. That was him. They were watching him.

“Aren’t you feeling a little bored herding earthworms?”

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3 Responses to 'Immanentise the Eschaton with your new job!'

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  1. dsgood said,

    I find myself thinking about whoever’s doing the paperwork. (I had a job whose title was initially “Clerk Typist” and was changed to “Office Automation Assistant.” At one point, my job included designing databases in FORTRAN. This would have been simpler if I’d known FORTRAN — and simpler yet if I’d known enough to do the job in a programming language better suited to that task.)

    Ten years in the future: There will still be documents filled out in illegible handwriting. The paperless office will not have arrived (I don’t expect it to till the next Singularity after the coming one.)

  2. rowanf said,

    Cool! Sounds like the start of a great story. Thanks for sharing the weird advert.

  3. chipuni said,

    I think that this fiction takes place in the Duality after the Singularity.

    Very nifty, though!


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