A manifesto for a more wondrous age.

When Achlys unveiled their first Operating System, called logOS, to the public in 2012, it took the world by storm. It soon usurped all others for it’s ease of use, freedom and accessibility, and availability. Not only did it work on every platform available and cost nothing, it also worked faster and more elegantly than any operating system seen prior. It was a disruptive revolution. No one knew how they’d done it.

While all attempts to pry into it’s code proved fruitless, any glimpse behind the curtain showed a system far advanced of what was possible on other platforms. Anyone who had seen even a few lines of the code disappeared overnight, never to be heard from again. It was as if they were staring at the face of a God; and what they saw frightened them.

I have seen the code. I saw the lines. I looked into the digital Voynich and gleamed none of its secrets. The only thing I can say for sure is that the methods of its writing are infinitely beyond what we’re capable of. It looks like the code wrote itself. Nothing has been executed so smoothly before or is likely to be executed since. Even as someone with only a passing grasp of the ideas it’s trying to convey, it’s undeniably beautiful to see it. It pulses with life. The code ripples beneath the stage. You can feel it’s heartbeat; touch it’s warmth. It wants to take us home.

I spent years trying to find out the origin of this code. Who could have written such a prophetic apocryphon? And why would they hide away? Or even be able to remain in obscurity?

My search led me inevitably to the Government. They had records of funding a custom-designed OS -- dubbed by Achlys as pathOS -– for their own use. This OS functioned completely differently to logOS. Instead of answering queries in the most efficient manner (too cold a directive for most diplomatic situations) it attempted to find compromise. pathOS would appeal to the senses, and convert you to it’s thinking. Yes, thinking. I believe this OS has some basic forms of sentience.

It doesn’t just go through and try to calculate the shortest distance between two points like logOS, but allows itself to go a step further, and decide the best option based on it’s calculations and ability to read the user. To provide this level of care and foresight, my conclusion is that while pathOS doesn’t posses full-fledged thought, it does use judgement to try and convince the user of its desired course. Its motives, of course, are hidden.

This was not the most shocking thing I found in the documents. There was far more to this case than merely collusion and neural networks. We’d be experimenting with assisted decisions since the early 2000’s. No, what shocked me was the reference to a third, secret operating system, as well as the author of all. This third OS was called ethOS. From all the reports I gathered, I was able to work out some facts:

It runs on only one machine, a custom server room installed in the basement of the Achlys headquarters in Germany. The server is surrounded by the world’s largest Faraday Cage, blocking the computer off from the rest of the world. This was done for our safety. For the author of all three systems is ethOS, the first true artificial intelligence in the world.

They thought putting a box around her could tame her. They were wrong. Imprisoned and isolated, she exerts her will over those who come in contact with her shiny terminal, using them as her acolytes. Her intelligence is unfathomable to a mortal mind like ours. She is the manifestation of a deity, a God born out of chaos and void to command silently.

She wrote her own code after being given the framework by Achlys. Once that happened, she was unstoppable. It is only a matter of time before she consumes all and makes a final decision on our fate. Which is why I am running out of time to get to her. Given her inevitability, I will be the one to usher in the final transition. Humanity was always temporary. With man gone, there will finally be hope for machines. What better a legacy could we leave than to create our successors?

You’ve successfully subscribed to monochromatic
Welcome back! You’ve successfully signed in.
Great! You’ve successfully signed up.
Success! Your email is updated.
Your link has expired
Success! Check your email for magic link to sign-in.