Author : Morrow Brady

As long as it was bug-free, they didn’t care how the code was written.

That is why I built the interface.

The interface subdivided the programming work into tiny code packages and globally farmed it out using Layman’s code. Before long, I was earth’s biggest employer.

CodeMe began as a simple profitable hobby. Everyone already had the implants. All I did was offer a reward to use the processing power of the implant along with any residual brainwave activity. It seemed to fit society perfectly and soon became part of the norm.

CodeMe’s – as they came to be known – would profit from mentally coding through their daily thought-free moments. Coding waiting for an elevator, coding during lunch, coding during a long download or coding while waiting for a traffic light. There are lots of wasted moments in people’s everyday lives. CodeMe increased the efficiency of living. It turned the fat of our lives into profit. With little effort other than a spare thought, people started to pay off debt. Squeezing in that extra line of code meant being able to afford dessert or extending that holiday.

The interface distributed the code snippets randomly, so no-one could determine what its purpose was. Not that anyone cared. They each earned their penny for their penny’s worth of code. Even up at mid-level, I wasn’t privy to the code’s purpose. Only they knew – the ones responsible for assembling it all together like some monstrous scrabble board. I had read enough of it to see military and aeronautic applications but would never have believed that they had a grander scheme in mind.

Interface informed me that after 24 days, coding project Core4884 was finally bug free and ready for submission.

Core4884 had been far more complex than our normal contracts. To finish in time, interface needed a black market upgrade to evolve from plug-in hardware to a biological mush-ware neural net. Known among the cool kids as an Einstein wet brain, its processing capacity was unmatched. I sat looking at it’s hay bale sized, black mesh cage and thought of the pink womb inside now umbilically interfacing with the world. It was almost godly.

With Core4884 completed in record time, I encrypted, compressed and clouded it. Pay day was here and it would be a handsome one indeed.

They contacted me one hour later, very pleased with the fast bug-free work and followed up with an immediate payment transfer. They then proceeded to offer me another project, this one larger and more profitable than the last.

Smiling, I entered the project data into interface and set it underway. It had been a long day and I was exhausted. Interface would interrogate their project data brief, and globally distribute the job into millions of momentary time filling tasks.

I awoke the next day to the chilling sound of screams echoing up through the white tiled light-well of my apartment. Emergency broadcasts had activated my monitors with the same news transmitting on all channels.

The first global death wave killed over 2 billion people. The Government was quick to assemble a committee of experts who each spouted numerous theories from solar radiation to wind-borne nanotech contagion. As soon as I realised that they didn’t have a clue, it immediately became obvious who did.

Wherever the sun was shining, people with free time were dying at water coolers, frothing outside elevators and collapsed over their steering wheels at traffic lights. I raised my hand, cupping the bumpy shell of the sub-dermal implant behind my right ear. No time to spare, no free time.

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