22nd Century Calling (Week 6, Assignment 1)

[SFX: alarm clock chime]

JOHN Q PUBLIC: I’m up, I’m up.

[SFX: fumbling to turn off alarm, finally ending with a thud]

ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE (ARTI) [voice with metallic edge, lacks typical artificial voice flatness]: Good morning, John. It’s zero-eight-thirty hours. Today is the ninth of August, twenty-one-fifteen.

JOHN: [groaning, noises of getting up in bed]

ARTI: Strong rainstorms are anticipated this evening, so be sure to bring an umbrella and a coat. Here are a few headlines I thought you might find interesting. Typhoon damage to the Los Angeles seawall caused flooding of several downtown area-

JOHN: Skip.

[more sound effects: sink, tooth brushing, putting on clothes, as scene progresses]

ARTI: The Housing Authority has announced it will advance plans for a new arcology in Bellevue, over protests from low-density housing advocates and real estate industry groups.

JOHN: Forward that to my work slate, and read me the next one.

ARTI: North American Alliance talks are slated to begin today in Vancouver.

JOHN: Tell me more about that.

ARTI: Okay. The second round of meetings are being held today in Vancouver, Cascadia, with participating nations hoping to lay the framework for an eventual North American Alliance. Cascadian Foreign Minister Myra Stuart will meet today with diplomats from Canada, Mexico, Cuba, Quebec, California, the Navajo, and the Central States of America. Though Stuart has expressed optimism regarding the talks, political analysts believe the event is rendered moot by boycotts from the United States, the Commonwealth of Alaska, and the Confederate Republic.

JOHN: Why the boycotts?

ARTI: The United States refuses to acknowledge the sovereignty of any nations formed from its former territory, and has a standing boycott on any events recognizing those nations. Alaska pulled its delegation due to a dispute with Cascadia over proposed limits on this year’s salmon harvest. The Confederacy withdrew from the talks following a string of attacks by Christian terrorists reportedly based in the Central States.

JOHN: Forward that one to my discussion group.

ARTI: Sure thing. Would you like to link up with them now?

JOHN: Call them once my ride gets here.

ARTI: Expected travel time to work today is forty-five minutes.

JOHN: Are you serious?

ARTI: Always, John, you know that. Construction on the Unity Highway has resulted in significant delays for automated traffic.

JOHN: What about the hyperloop?

ARTI: Still undergoing renovations.

JOHN: *audible sigh* Okay. Let Tom and the rest know that I’ll be working from home today.

ARTI: Already done. I’ve also loaded your Netflix queue.

JOHN: *laughs* Well, I guess it’s time to get to work!