Sunday, 3 May 2009

White Fungus

White Fungus, by Bruce Sterling, is a really nice short story (about 12 pages) about the reorganization of society after the economic system has completely collapsed.
"The solution was making the defeat of our hunger look like fun. People gardened in five-minute intervals, by meshing webcams with handsets. A tomato vine ready to pick sent someone an SMS. Game-playing gardeners cashed in their points at local market stalls and restaurants. This scheme was an ‘archi tec ture of participation’. Since the local restaurants were devoid of health and employee regulations, they were easy to start and maintain. Everything was visible on the Net. We used ingenious rating systems.

People keenly resented me for this intervention. My coldly logical scheme was about as popular as Minimalism. I did it anyway. I designed the vertical racks for the outsides of old buildings, I designed the irrigation systems, and I also planted the webcams to deter the hordes of eager fruit thieves. I performed this labor in my ‘free time’, because the need to eat is not a ‘business model’. How ever, my child was eating fresh produce. All the children were eating. Once other parents grasped this reality, I received some help. " [1]
  1. White Fungus, <>

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