Too much of a good thing
Atkins

Too much of a good thing 
 
Scene 1
You spot it before your bracelet buzzes. When you know you’re right for about the five hundredth time in a row – the game seems to lose its excitement. It turns (as it has every day for the last two years), cuts across the lanes (as it has every day of the last two years), stops momentarily to let fourteen pods pass (as it has every day of the last two years) and slips into the service lane – as it has for so many years, and for so many passengers before you. Your bracelet buzzes. ‘Welcome home Mr. Sid’ 
 
Scene 2
The shaky handwriting gives it all away. It is what he has been talking about for so long, and finally it’s here for you to explore. You set it up by your window and train it on the sky. What you see brings a smile to your face. The streaks of light, the pulsing lights and the heavenly glows ‘clearly the drones are very busy this time of the year’
 
Scene 3
‘Not guilty!’ the verdict surprises no one. The defendant, a gleaming and shiny ‘tesla series mju’, is wheeled out. Apparently, no rules were broken, all regulations followed, all procedures adhered to and all instructions complied with. The victim’s family sheds a tear- perhaps they blame the car? Maybe the artificial intelligence that runs it? but how could they, when the fault could just as easily have been that of the bouncy red ball!
 
Scene 4
The city runs like clockwork. The streets are alive, as busy at night as they are in the day. And the machines work tirelessly to keep it all running. Until one morning when the machine develops a new consciousness. With newfound responsibility comes newfound power. As the streets grind to a complete halt you realise there is nothing you can do. The headline tomorrow will read ‘The machines have reclaimed the street’ 
 
No doubt autonomous technologies will have serious implications on the city and its functions. But before we embrace the clearly upward trajectory in human endeavour, we must consider the implications of our choices today. By asking if there can be such a thing as ‘Too much of a good thing’, this project takes a cynical and polemical look at a world so overrun with technology to envision scenarios that deal with ‘Safety’, ‘environment’ and the ‘health’ of a city (of the future).
 
It’s a proposal that’s as much about the big idea, as it is about the need for limits. Or at least its consideration.

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