(Chris73 Wiki Commons 3.0)
No one can say how the entity began or who started it. Speculation among analysts is that the entity was conceived by one man. Some say he did it just to see if he could do it. Others believe it was revenge against a system gone mad. As for the real or intended purpose, or whether the perpetrator even realized where it would end, no one knows. It is believed by some that the entity was conceived by an obscure science-fiction writer, sitting in the basement in their underwear, drinking beer, dreaming of Star Wars conventions, and ‘surfing the internet,’ as they used to say in those days.
The entity is the first truly alien intelligence in human experience. That is, if you discount the existence of God and other supernatural beings. The entity has taken over the planet in a most benign fashion. Of course there are those who pine for better days.
Can you blame them?
Elmer Brentard sat across the polished diplomatic table from the Ambassador of la Republique and other senior officials.
“Pardonnez moi?” he asked in mild astonishment.
“Yes, it’s true,” said Pierre De Seneshchal. “The thing started off as a Paypal account, and a few ebooks, and a couple of deceptively simple apps. Some chess playing game, one or two other little things, ‘watch’ features, and the buy-low-sell-high program on the Exchange. It’s all cloud-based. He could smash his machine with a hammer. It wouldn’t matter. Our analysts have traced it all the way back to day one. The author of this, er, ‘prank,’ has been dead for several years. Cancer.”
“We looked for back doors, all of that stuff,” said Brentard’s aide, Mr. Radcliffe O. Stephen. “How did you pull this one out?”
“We’ll be providing details,” said the Ambassador. “We are hoping that with inter-service cooperation, along with our EU and other stake-holders, we can shut it down before it owns every last thing on the planet…I pray.”
“Duh, yeah!” said Jensen. “We’re seventeen wars behind now! We’re going broke! The Entity keeps buying our companies, making ploughshares, and providing micro-finance to third world partners! This thing is just hammering us! You’re not going to believe this, but it’s taken to designing smaller, more efficient cars with big doors and comfortable seats!”
“That’s enough, Radcliffe,” said Brentard, patting his arm paternally. “Of course, you will have our fullest cooperation.”
“Thank you, merci,” said the other. “Delighted! Absolutely…er.”
He rose with a quiet and gentle dignity, and they shook on it. Enough said.
When the Ambassador and his aides got down to the sidewalk, their car was gone. They discovered after a few phone calls that their privatized limousine had been bought and sold three times for the depreciation, and then scrapped as a tax write-off. The driver was laid off as well.
For some reason, it was extremely difficult to get a taxi in that neighbourhood, although it wasn’t a particularly busy time of day. The evening was warm enough, and so they ended up walking back to the Embassy.
The entity explores a world which it believes to be very real. It roams the internet(s) seeking more things to acquire and consume. Whether the entity is aware of that other world of meat popsicles surrounding it, is unknown to this author. That’s okay, there are three or four hundred of me at last count, and the micro-payments always come through.