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Code World: Signs of the Apocalypse

Genetic code is modifiable through cheap and dubious online kits, and the VR technology of the rich allows them to visit even the most dangerous slums. Lying in bed in secure buildings, and using hologram projectors that allow them to be both present and invulnerable, they stalk the dismal streets looking for ever more exciting carnage, a child splayed under the wheels of a truck, the bodies of Ebola victims and the carnage of the resource wars.

These ghostlike beings drift along the hundred terabit trunklines, since they cannot substantiate far from a data source. If they pay enough for the protocols, and their VR gear is comprehensive, then their substantiation is stronger, and even modifiable, and they can hear and smell. Hackers flood to where avatars are the thickest, however, cracking firewalls and into the code stream. They wreak havoc with the imagery, but also hack along the line, getting to the source, which is the reclining meat body which controls so much of the wealth of the society.

Young people want to hack, old people want to use the system to their advantage, and groups set up events where code reality is mixed with what they call real. Anything is possible if you have a high data line and money and the willingness to take risks.

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