In 3069 the Milky Way became fully automated, at least in matters pertaining to sentient beings. This was the year that the Thought Organizator was patented by Freud Herzberg. Freud immediately sold the Thought Organizator, the most important patent of the 30th century, to Magnif Corp. for 12 Earthos. 12 Earthos was a hell of a lot of money in 3069.
The Thought Organizator was an entirely self
sufficient machine about the size of Brazil. I went on a tour of this
miraculous device when I was a child with my Future Machinists of Earth
troop. During this tour I wandered off by myself, following a cluster of
bright purple iridescent chips.
Each person, each
living thing, has a chip. We don't have them installed, the chips find
us almost as soon as we're born, sent out in swarms periodically at
random or on purpose from the thousands of chip bays extending from the
steel walls of the Thought Organizator. When a mother is giving birth,
for instance, her chip signals that a new chip will likely be needed
soon and so a brand new purple winged dot is marked and sailing through
the cosmos for her infant before it breathes its first breath.
Sometimes the chip arrives far in advance of the infant and the mother
or father has to catch it and store it in a jar to keep it from trying
to install through the mother's skin. I had seen this happen once with
my youngest brother. The tiny purple dot shimmered in the upside down
jar, tapping rhythmically against the side facing my heaving and
screaming mother. I was more interested in the chip than I was in the
birth of my final sibling, despite all of the childbirth videos I'd been
urged to view in order to prepare. When my brother Kazar was born
lifeless, his fat limbs purple and limp, the beautiful beetle shifted
its flight pattern and began to tap against the jar on the side facing
the Thought Organizator, away from my mother.
chips return to their bays to record their findings and to ready
themselves for a new mission when the body they are programmed to
install in expires. My father lifted the jar just far enough to crush
the purple chip under its rim as it tried to squirm past. You see, the
chip's mission had reversed the moment the chips in my mother and father
recognized that Kazar would not need one.
doctor and nurses, all a part of the Thought Organizator along with the
chips and everything else in this life, flicked their inquisitive lights
towards the dead chip for a moment before returning to mopping sweat
from my mothers brow. I left the room silently, feeling a little guilty
over Kazar but unsure why.
Understand, my father
wasn't mad at the chip, it was reverence for the chip's intended purpose
that he felt when he crushed it dead. The robots take the dead, we
have no ceremony, and ceremony helps.
The chips had
saved my life a few times, as well as the lives of everyone I've ever
known. They work by reading every aspect of our moods, thoughts, and
experiences and comparing them against all other chips in order to get
the average of every possible situation. If a person is being attacked
their chip sends out a distress signal. This signal is read by all
nearby chips, including the attacker's chip, which immediately begins
shutdown proceedings in order to stop the attack. If a person succeeds
in murdering someone despite this safeguard, they are instantly judged
against every possible opinion via every bit of information from the
victim and murderer's own minds. If found guilty, the killer's chip
will terminate. Those are some of the more dramatic applications of
these devices. In reality, the chips mainly keep themselves busy
figuring out what sort of music we're more likely to enjoy and what we
prefer on our sandwiches. Because of the chips, society moves in a
completely organic and seemingly thoughtless but efficient majority
rules fashion. No need for government or law enforcement, most people
avoid crime because they understand they will be instantly caught and
judged by the matrix of humanity. True democracy.
the day of the Thought Organiztor tour, I had been separated from the
Future Machinists of Earth by this cluster of tiny purple beetles
buzzing through the air in perfect formation. They moved in such a way,
their tiny wings humming along, I had to follow. I couldn't take my
eyes away from them as they turned each corner in unison, a grid of
unwavering points set in the air fluttering exactly one inch and a half
apart from each other. The chips were completely oblivious to the
chubby girl in a white paper robe and booties trotting and sliding and
If I had been panicked or upset, I
would have set off the alarm in my own chip. If my scout master had
noticed my absence, a similar alarm would have been set off and they
would have been led to me by signals from my chip. That didn't happen.
Instead I eventually found myself in a room filled with a few dozen
children my own age.
Each child was purple and damp
like my distant view of Kazar had been, before the robot nurse bundled
him away. These children were thinner than my limp fat brother, though,
and I didn't think they were dead. They stood in no particular
arrangement swaying slightly. I shuddered. Each of these creatures had
a small port between his or her eyes, I noticed, and it was to these
slim ports that the fluttery chips migrated. The glass door I'd come
through read "MOOR LORTNOC".
I turned and ran when
several of them began walking towards me mouthing my name soundlessly,
"Hulia Yossarian, Hulia Yossarian" tears streaming from their lavender
The Thought Organizator design that was developed by Freud Herzberg didn't have a room filled with walking children's corpses.
most amazing aspect of this machine", we were lectured by my scout
master who had caught up with me as I ran past robot bay 902, "Is the
CONTROL ROOM". She went on to explain that the machine itself had
realized, because some people had realized, that majority rule wasn't
always a wonderful thing. Sometimes, majority rule was a terrible
thing, and therefor not the best idea for a master interplanetary
guidance system. In the infinite wisdom of the Thought Organizator
machine, which was of course powered by the infinite wisdom of the
majority, it was decided that a group of beings whose minds had not yet
been corrupted by cognitive dissonance be kept as a control. The
majority is the safeguard against the tyranny of the individual, and the
CONTROL ROOM is the safeguard against the tyranny of the majority.
been in the CONTROL ROOM of the Thought Organizator for 512 years. I
know everything that ever was and everything that ever will, I know
everyone and everywhat. There is no word for what I feel all of the