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Moonshot

October 24, 2018

Short-story idea:

A vast, almost magically advanced technology company maintains an in-house experimental wing, like Google X or Xerox PARC. The experimental wing harbors dozens of projects pursuing wildly ambitious “moonshots”: efforts to reverse aging, solve hunger, eradicate disease (perhaps even manipulate time). One of these projects, we learn, is busy collecting and storing data far beyond what any user suspects—indeed, far beyond what the terms of service permit.

It emerges that the project’s moonshot is cultural. Its hypothesis is that, in 20 or 30 years, people won’t object to the sorts of privacy violations they now find appalling.