“On one estimate, the adult human brain stores about one billion bits—a couple of orders of magnitude less than a low-end smartphone.”Nick Bostrom
2,000 Rotations Around the Sun
It was February 1st, In the Year of Her Mother’s Earth 4019 y.m.e
After the Atmospheric-Wars ended in the 3049 y.m.e, the soft fleshiness of Old World Human (OWH) lungs could no longer keep up with the rigors of the criminally insane. When the Old World Human Warranties were deemed null and void by the Treaty of New China-North Mars Alliance, the demand for a new generation of Police emerged.
Hence, fresh out of the academy, the newest crime fighting machine: The POCs.
And this is their story…
Story-Time: The Great Pandemic of 2020
“And so, kids, it was the year 2020. The ol’ cops-n-robbers were nothing like you see today.”
(Raises hand but does not wait to be called upon) “Did they carry those cheap old laser guns?” (The precious laughter of children & robots filled the room)
“Did their jet packs use the old fossil fuel from ancient times?” (Children & robots clamored in indistinguishable ideas and excitement)
(Pleasantly shared a heartfelt chuckle)
“No-no, children. These ancient times were much different. The police, well…the police were actually full humanoid!” The children & robots gasped and fell into a collective hush of astonishment and intrigue. “The year was 2020. A time of great confusion and a time of fear so powerful that it stopped the planet, formerly known as Earth, in its tracks.”
“It was the time before we colonized the Nation of Mars or even our own Moon for that matter. It was a time when the ozone layer still protected the skin. Back then they did not know what we know today.
“How could they?
“But one thing was for sure. That very potent combination of confusion and fear naturally divided ancient humanity into two types of people:
“Those who put ‘Me’ before ‘We’, and those who risked their own demise for the good of the people. The ol’ cops-n-robbers was nothing like you see today.
“They wore feeble lead powered pistols on their hips when they took on outlaws. They wore heavy and bulky shields underneath their uniform, which made of mere wool from an ancient beast known as the sheep. With these petty armaments they fought valiantly against the criminals of the time.
“But in the year 2020 bme, a time when the masses still ignorantly congregated in large groups, as they do in the old history movies, a new enemy arose. One that would change the fabric of society for these full humanoids forever… And it’s name… Was COVID.”
A YOUNG CAPTAIN’S MISSION
The young captain stared at the rectangular box. He lifted the large tab which was hinged from one end to the rest of the box. Inside of it were thousands of thinly sliced layers of sheets. They were in the same shape of the rectangular box it was contained in. They were all hinged together on one of it’s edges.
What lay before the captain was an antique book. An LAPD policy book to be exact.
His metal fingers made it cumbersome to gain any traction in order to leaf through the pages. It was a practice he’s only seen on his V.R.R., (Virtual Reality Retinas), before he made the decision to fully upgrade his humanoid body.
“Good Goddess of Her Mother’s Earth.” he thought. Then he spoke aloud to himself, “It must have taken their whole lives to input this information into their I.M.C.’s”, (Internal Memory Clouds). The captain leaned back slightly in thought. He remembered that the OWH’s did not have I.M.C’s. They didn’t even install hard drives into them until 2050 b.m.e.
The captain’s V.R.R alerted him of his superior’s presence.
He sat erect. L-shaped.
His face became stoic and his body motionless.
They focused and refocused.
They lit up with flashes of an assortment of colors.
If you listened close enough, you could actually hear the young captain’s eyes.
Like a miniature factory within them, working furiously with all the sounds of heavy machinery buzzing and drilling about.
What must be going through the young Captain’s mind?
Let’s take a closer look.
As the Captain sat motionless, he was guided by his superior. A meeting took place inside of his half-human half-robot brain. He was given a mission:
Find pure OWH’s and study their ways in order to seek best practices for police perfection.
Packaging this concept of “police perfection” has been considered the Holy Grail of controlling the perceived evils and errors of humanity. But who can coral the powerful tides of Evolution?
Black Holes were penetrated in 3012 y.m.e Light Speed was reached up to 1/1,000,000,000th of it’s top speed in 3097 y.m.e. Dark Matter went from a conceptualized unknown to a beaker in a lab at the start of the 4000’s y.m.e. Worm-hole leakage detection, better known as the WHLD Project, set forward thousands of companies trying to be the first to time travel. It was the newest frontier for humanity to tackle. Yet Evolution seemed to slip through the grasp of every great scientist in every epoch of scientific revolution the world has seen thus far.
And this young police captain was given this duty? Seemed farfetched.
The Captain unplugged from the V.R.R. meeting. He took a deep breath as he looked down at the antique police policy book. How was he supposed to understand the mindset of OWH’s from so long ago? And how was he supposed to use such archaic perspectives to improve modern day policing 6,000 years later?
It was a task that seemed unreachable.
First he had to comprehend how he himself became half cyborg, and how that particular state of being was once looked at as a lesser form of life. His quasi-human/quasi-robot ancestors surely paid the price of the OWH’s ignorance. 2 millennia of cyborg slavery still wore heavy in the populaiton’s mostly mechanical hearts.
It was time for the young Captain to research and try to understand a specific slice of history.
Old World Human (O.W.H.) vs. Police Probationer Capture Contrivance (POCs)
There came a time when these humanoid cyborg species were the most respected class of beings. They held office. They made discoveries. They made music and poetry.
But it was not always so.
After the Pandemic of 2020, which also saw months of uncontrollable riots, OWH’s did not want full humans to police other fellow humans. They wanted perfection.
That was their biggest judgement error.
The downfall of the traditional cop was fast. Political fear and world wide hurt feelings (a pandemic all on it’s own) called for their immediate removal. Large companies out of Japan and New China moved in swiftly with their fully robotic police officers machines.
The machines were far from perfect. The artificial empathy in their code was simply a script. Many innocent people, more than with the fully human police force, were mistaken as threats and killed as a result. After thousands of mistaken shootings, they shut down the officer robots. But it was not enough for the masses. They needed to place the blame on someone not something.
Soon the robotic companies jumped ship. Too many executives were placed in prisons for murder based on what their machines did. They were not protected. The masses did not care. Now police departments were left with platoons of these robot cops, but no upgrades were available.
They scurried to find a solution.
Next came the era of partnering up fully human cops with robot cops. It seemed like an unstoppable combination. However the gap was still too large. An imperfect human with the ability to empathize to an infinite number of scenarios in police work soon clashed with a robot cop who was programmed to enforce by the letter of the law.
They turned on each other. The robot’s perception caused many of them to murder their human partners. They failed to posses this human emotion of empathy, so they could not be blamed.
Many human cops died trying to stop their robot counterparts from making wrong deadly decisions.
Nuances of shoot/dont shoot police scenarios proved much too complicated for a robot to deal with. They failed at determining key factors of which only full humans were capable of. Lawsuits ensued. Who would take responsibility? The answers were not easy.
As the centuries passed, the desire to perfect law enforcement lead to a new type of police:
UPRISINGS, DEMISE & RENNAISANCE: The Year of Her Mother’s Earth: y.m.e
The old world ended in 2025 after a disillusionment of the people. Statues fell, police forces were stripped of their power, chaos ensued as the government allowed it all in a social experiment gone awry.
In 2025 AD, 5 years after the civil unrest began, an oppression sparked the Vigilante Revolution of 2025 AD. It lasted 10 years. Some pockets of society adapted the old Hugh and Cry method of policing. Others fell into chaos with the Sovereign Experiments of William Gatner.
Everything from Military-like police to new concepts like the H.U.G.S Patrol systems (Huggingg. Understanding. Giving) were implemented. But there was no organization. Rogue militias of vigilante groups roamed freely across the globe. It was a globe that belonged to nobody.
Without a governing party, humanity took a step back into a dark epoch where the innocent and weak were pushed to the fringes of society. The innocent, who were later given the unofficial title of The Innocence Corporation (The IC), were forced into the shadows and the sewers. They lived peacefully but hid from the violent oppression of the Revolution.
Finally, after 10-years of a global civil war, The IC revolted. They came with a weapon that they have been building during the 10-years they spent underground.
An AI robot known as the PPCC, “Police Probationer Capture Contrivance”, or as they would later be referred to in the frontiers of the dark galactic alleyways, “POC’s” or “Pocs”. They were known in the Old World as a “P1”, “Rookie” or “Boot” for reasons hat have held steadfast over the generations.
These POCs were 60% human and 40% machine. And they would change the world of policing for thousands of years to come.
The IC controlled them remotely from the safety of their underground bunkers. As the civil war ensued the humans were obliterated. However, The IC came out from underground in full force. They declared a new world order.
One of peace.
One that would control crime through a human-machine so that the rest of the world could live in peace. They declared it Year Zero: THE YEAR OF HER MOTHER’S EARTH, (abbrevieated: y.m.e.)
Future Frontiers of Enforcement
The young captain closed the antique book. His new jurisdiction would cover the space-way between Earth and Mars. It was a hot bed for the illegal inter-planetary AI slave trade. His old duty was to balance the rights of OWHs and full AI’s, both owned and free.
But now he had a new mission.
In his attempt to bridge the old world with the new, many things raced through his mind. Perfecting altruism would surely get him high accolades and immediate promotion. But he knew the baggage that came with that. That baggage was, the human flaw.
“Wait.” he thought. “That’s just it!”
The young captain looked at his half robotic arm and human elbows. He moved his limbs around slowly and stared as an epiphany hit him in the most human part of his brain.
“We need empathy. With that comes a police force that can differentiate between good and evil. With that comes mistakes. Mistakes that need to be learned from, not vilified and punished.” he thought out loud.
Little did the young captain know that his research would be a precursor to one of the most infamous case laws of his time, Neptune Counsel vs. Bot 69224. This court case would make him famous. The court case concluded that non synthetic empathy is mandatory in policing and that the honest mistakes that come with it will not be criminally punished.
His superiors would never admit it but in order to reach a better police force, fully human or not, these flaws were actually necessary. Human emotion, he surmised, was absolutely necessary in law enforcement. Human emotions are not flawless. But it is precisely in those flaws where progress is made.
Flaws, are the building blocks of progress.
Diagnols of Digression
The captain stood up. And for the first time, he wished to feel what it was to be 100% human.
Could the love he has been able to feel be exponentially more powerful?
Could the suppressed longing and jealousy from his partial robotic heart hold him back from feeling the over joyous happiness that drove OWH’s to near extinction?
All of a sudden he did not feel free anymore. All of a sudden he yearned for those full human feelings he was born with. The young captain did not feel complete.
The Captain began drilling at the screws on his arm. He flipped and rotated his arm in order to reach all of the screws. He worked feverishly and impatiently.
The nub that ended just below his human elbow never looked so beautiful.
He removed his VRR. A round micro chip fell onto the table. It looked like a human eyeball. It was covered in a gelatinous mixture of flesh and blood. He opened his uniform and looked at his chest. The exposed panel that connected to his heart was beeping with emergency alerts of exposure.
A hologram of the captains superior appeared on the desk. “Captain! What on Mother’s Earth are you doing? I order to stop this madness!”
“Will I die?” inquired the young captain.
“What?” retorted his superior.
“If I remove this panel will I die?” demanded the young captain.
His superior replied hesitantly, “No but you’ll become… one of them.”
The young captain smiled as he looked on the table top filled with screws, panels and wires. His human hand grasped the square panel as he ripped it off of his chest. Buzzing and high pitched alerts filled the room.
The young captain fell onto his knees. He was bloody. He was eye-less as he looked up. No longer did a screen filled with digitized directions filter his vision of the world. He was now free from all things AI.
His face held a smile of exhilaration. His single human eye filled with tears and amazement. His whole being was in bliss. Fully human emotions that were blocked from him at birth now gushed into his heart.
He was free.
Story-Time and the Old-Timer
“So you see kids, there is only one way to police our fellow humans. And that is with the full package of emotions we are born with. Love. Anger. Hate. Jealousy. Regret. Sadness.
How can we police people without knowing exactly what they are feeling? It is impossible. In that package comes all of the beautiful flaws necessary for progress.
So how do we police in the modern day of 4019 yme?
Well, with common sense and a human touch.”
And so the children and robots that filled the nursery were satisfied with the day’s story time. They went off for recess as the Old-timer turned his chair around and looked outside the window.
He removed his sunglasses and buffed a shine into them. As he did he saw his reflection on the lenses. What he saw was a one-eyed old man.
He saw a wrinkled and aged man.
He saw a man with grey hairs, who had only one eye.
Only one…beautiful…human eye.