((I’ll be honest, I got distracted today by a variety of things, so I don’t have the next part of Looker.exe written yet. I vaguely remember saying that I needed to work on a buffer? One of these days…Anywho, This isn’t the first (or second, or third) time that I’ve tried to write a story in this universe. It was the topic of a play-by-post site, an attempt at me to develop a D20-based system, as well as several attempts to write a full-length novel in the universe. Here is a portion of the backstory that I made in the past. It is not source material for my current set of stories, but it will have to act as a buffer for now, and may serve as inspiration for the direction of the current universe down the road. Part 2 will be saved for a rainy day – probably after Looker.exe finishes))
ARC: A History (Part One)
Earth, 2112 – On the Advent of Terraforming
Adaptation, growth, and expansion are the three steps of a waltz we know as evolution. If one step is missed, the dancers will falter; if all are missing, then the dance cannot begin, let alone continue. This is the problem that faced humanity in 2100 – all of earth had been conquered and adapted to Man’s design, leaving nowhere else to turn. As a result, Man grew stagnant, and began to destroy itself through warfare, plague, and famine. If not for the colonization attempts on Mars and the Moon, all would have been lost. Several companies pooled their time and resources to establish the first terraformed colony on the Moon. The colony prospered for several months before an artificial atmosphere malfunction occurred.
Rioting occurred on the streets, and it seemed that there would be more bloodshed than ever before. However, one man stepped forward to propose a temporary solution. Rather than terraform the surface of the moon, he suggested that terraforming be done within the moon itself. The United Nations was in agreement, and they appointed this man, Rudolf Berg, as the director of this project.
Earth, 2107 – Newspaper clipping
Rudolf Berg – Savior?
Dr. Rudolf Berg, a Swedish ecologist, just yesterday gave his proposal to the UN regarding the terraforming of the moon for colonization purposes. In a controversial move, he suggested that humanity live underground, in the core of the moon. His 3-year plan involves the excavation of the majority of the body of the moon, the replacement of lost mass with a gravity core, and the installation of terraforming agents within the hollowed moon. He has hired the ARC Corporation to supply crew and machines to make his dream a reality. But, will it be soon enough to stop the madness happening on this planet? If the rioting doesn’t calm down soon, there may be no one left by the time the moon is terraformed.
A look into Berg’s history yielded some interesting…
Earth, 2109 – Newspaper clipping
ARC, others implement security forces
As the terraforming of the moon’s core began, riots reached an all time high planetside. ARC, as well as other robotics and weapons manufacturing groups, have replied by supplying military forces worldwide with experimental weapons and machinery – the highlight being ARC’s MkII Mobile Weapons Platform, a spider-like robotic transport that can be outfitted with various heavy weapons, such as artillery, anti-aircraft guns, and missile launchers. The advantage of ARC’s system is the combination of infantry mobility with a tank’s firepower. This will give the military the needed fighting edge against insurgents and other groups.
In addition to supplying weapons, the corporations have announced that they will be implementing their own security forces to augment military forces in their areas, effective by the end of the year…
Earth, 2110 – Newspaper clipping
Moon’s terraforming completed, more underway
The moon terraforming project was deemed safe for public inhabitation today by the United Nations. Not more than an hour after the declaration, the first passenger shuttle took flight. It is expected that several dozen more will have left by the end of the week, even though communal districts have yet to be designed, let alone constructed. ARC, presumably because of their successful terraforming of the moon, has been commissioned to provide security for the new colonies. They have also been given permission to build a research and training facility on the surface of the moon.
Now that it’s been proven possible to terraform the core of a celestial body, other corporations have begun to excavate their own moons and asteroids. ARC had already begun excavation of Io prior to UN approval. Their reasoning? “ARC began excavation of the moon Io without UN approval because the Company did not believe approval necessary, based on the Company’s interpretation of the juridical area of the United Nations…”
Earth, 2110 – Newspaper clipping
ARC – Who are they?
I’m sure that I speak for the rest of the world when I ask the question, “Who the hell is ARC?” It’s very rare to have a company rise to the occasion right when the world needs it, let alone one with as little publicity as this corporation. The people deserve to know as much as possible about a company that can directly defy a world body and get away with it, and this reporter has discovered as much as she could about the company.
ARC, short for Advanced Robotics Creation, has been around since the late 21st century, specializing in robot-human interfaces, nanobots, and terraforming. Surprisingly, they have done very little work on designing a humanoid AI for their robotics – an interview with one of their lead researchers informed this reporter “Have you ever seen those movies about rogue machines? Yes, those ones. ARC doesn’t believe that a robot should ever be able to complete more than rudimentary actions without a user interface. We do what we can to make it easier for people to control ARC creations, but there will always be someone behind the wheel of an ARC product.”
In light of the recent riots and terraforming, ARC has released a new set of Core Aims – Technology, Security and Research – as their major areas of influence in the changing world. To think that a company that initially revolutionized a universal voice recognition system for household televisions would be responsible for the protection of an entire colony is beyond me, but I will say one thing – ARC is on the rise…
ARC Moon Base, 2113 – Channel 3 Interview (original script)
Marie Matthews (MM) – “So, tell me more about what you do at ARC.”
James Varnum (JV) – “Well, I am a project leader for ARC’s Materials & Energy Research Division. We specialize in designing new alloys for military forces – we actually worked on the transparaluminum currently used in Humvees – and we try to find new efficient power sources.”
MM – “New power sources? I assume that means that ARC is also participating in the positron race?”
JV – “ARC is investigating positron technology, yes. (laughs) Although, not nearly as greatly as you may think.”
MM – “Hm? I don’t follow. Does this mean that ARC is going to abandon research in that field?”
JV – “Hardly. I’m just saying that there’s no hurry for us to bring positron technology to market.”
MM – “Even with the Foundry claiming that they’ve solved the stabilization issue and claiming to have a product to market within the next two years?”
JV – “I do not speak on behalf of the company with this next comment, but I have always been of the mind that there’s a huge difference between a first-in-class product and a first-class product.” [We can’t use this, Marie. We’d lose our job. I know we like to tell it how it is, but ARC would pull strings to make it seem like we made it up. JA]
MM – “I see. So, what does ARC have in mind to bring to the table?”
JV – “That information, unfortunately, is confidential.”
MM – “Pity. So, your boy is turning 10 this year? Grooming him to be the future of ARC?”
JV – “Zeke? I wouldn’t want to impose my hopes on him…”
Earth, 2114 – Magazine Clipping
ARC throws its hat into the ring
In a surprise move today, ARC has released a statement declaring its intent to release a large-scale positron energy plant in the New York area by the end of this year. What’s interesting is that this statement was made exactly a week after the Automation & Robotics Foundry released their final plans for a positron power plant to be installed in London by spring 2115. Many strategists believe that ARC is making a pull to steal publicity in the short term, yet I believe that ARC actually does have something in the works. I mean, this is the corporation that terraformed the freakin’ moon! If any company can pull this kind of stunt and still come out on top, it would be ARC.
With three different ARC facilities (New York City, the Moon, and Io), ARC has plenty of space to do whatever it pleases. Rumor has it that ARC has even purchased land on Venus of all places! What they will do with real estate on the most uninhabitable planet in our solar system is beyond me. ARC turned down an offer to purchase land on Mars to build another research facility. Why would they choose…