Very few people realize that in 01998 a new meridian was draw on the planet. This made way for a new division of time so that it could be recordable on a 10-base system. The measurement of time became metric; starting at 0 and ending at 999. It was no mistake that a Swiss watch company, Swatch, made this possible. It was touted and celebrated by the likes of Nicholas Negroponte, founder of the MIT Media Lab.

The idea of metric time is nothing new, but this one was widely hyped and, as I said, celebrated. It was meant to be ‘Internet Time’. No time zones and no conversion; if it was @999 somewhere in the world, it was @999 everywhere else. Sun up or down, people asleep or awake–time was the same time everywhere. If I said my ‘Internet event’ (such as streaming) was to take place @879, then all one would have to do is log on at that time, anywhere. No messy adding or subtracting from other Mean Times or whatever. So the world is divided into ‘.beats’ and a thousand of them at that. Each one is equivalent to 86.4 seconds of normal time.

.beat time fascinates me, from the necessity of drawing a new meridian to its usage across server farms and the like on the Internet. In the sense of digital imaging, Internet time increased to resolution of the planet. New meridian means a smaller map grid. A smaller square in the grid the better refined data in said square. It’s like if you had a raw image at 72 dpi and then upped the resolution to 300 dpi. The image is more crisp and zooming in reveals finer detail.

So too, to these stories; rather this story. These are continuing glimpses into the life and endeavors of some sort of agent working with powers beyond our own, in a time not of ours. Whether it is past, present or future, I try to avoid determining.

As for genre, I think it’s safe to say it is science fiction or fantasy. Arthur C. Clark was quoted as saying, ‘any sufficiently advanced form of technology is indistinguishable from magic.’ I take this to heart in these writings, refusing to define high technologies in terms of understandable language. Maybe the world the agent lives in is rich with omnipresent technologies that mimic or take advantage of natural materials and occurrences, I refuse to find out. Instead these writings mix historic and fictional environments with near magical qualities, it does however retain the ideals of the science fiction genre in including outer-space, time travel and the like.

I write these when I have time and the important thing is that it stems from impromptu imagination. That is, I write as if I’m steering a stream of consciousness. I have an environment, characters, etc, and all I have to do is allow them to independently interact. It is almost as if I’m just watching.

The first person narrative came about accidentally, and as stated in @205, the plan is to move to a second person perspective; then onto a third person perspective for the remainder of the story.

I’m interested in filling every ‘beat’ from @000 to @999 with an insight into this world. That’s 1000 snippets that somehow have to form a cohesive whole. Just as we perceive time to move in one direction, so to will this story. In the sense that the plot will move forward, whether or not it is back and for in the time of the story has yet to be determined. I write these as I have time on my regular weblog, but I’ve decided to provide all of them as a compilation. They read in order from left to write, the number being the Internet Time stamp at which I began writing.

I’ve come to call this series ‘@x’ because the ‘@’ is to only the designator for Internet Time, but ‘x’ is a standard variable in math. An ‘x’ is an unknown, and like an equation, combined with Internet Time, I am trying to solve for ‘x.’ This story is ‘x’, but also the full title ‘@x’ is a way of expressing an unknown time stamp, as this story is written impulsively. Very little editing, even to the point of spelling errors, is even done. I have cleaned it up for presentation on this site, however. I hope you enjoy.