“And now ladies and gentlemen, avatars and bots, the chief inventions officer and president of MegaOne Corp, Nadia Yaosing!” (Ruffles and flourishes swell as Nadia’s hologram walks onstage.
Music fades as she reaches center stage.)
Thank you, thank you. Welcome to 2034 and welcome to MegaOne’s most mega event ever. We have over 50,000 participants here in Orlando. And fewer than 10 percent of us had to travel to get here!
Can you tell who is physical and who is holo? I can’t.
I hugged Sharkey James, our lead event planner, and his replicant, Dick K. Phillip, backstage. Only one of them can be here in person for security reasons, and I still don’t know who won the coin toss to be here in the ‘flesh.’ That’s how good MegaPresence is.
The executive board and I are at the McMurdo Conference Center in Antarctica. Some of you are at our high-pressure research facility in the Marianas Trench. Some of you are at our low-gravity lab on Mars. MegaPresence brings us all together with all of the sights, the sounds, the sensations, the tastes and the touches of physical reality.
And now to work. The next three days are all about the future. Change is the one constant in life. Our grandparents saw telephones transform from bricks tethered to cables to smaller bricks they had to hold and manipulate. When was the last time you held your com or did more than think at it?
Ever heard of Google Glass? People used to get arrested for wearing it while driving. They thought it was a distraction, a danger. The danger today is thrill-seekers who do the driving themselves. Until they crash.
The leading cause of road accidents is drivers who take the controls instead of leaving it to MegaDrive. Our goal for 2034 is a global mandate to lock out manual controls on all MegaDrive-enabled roadways. Autodrive on the ground will make surface transport as safe as autofly has made air travel.
But don’t get too attached to safe surface travel. In 20 years, MegaDrive and MegaPilot will be history.