About the FACT Edit
Manufactured by Seshadri Industries. Basically an internet access terminal seen in the hallway outside April's room in the Border House. After telling her she can upgrade to voice interface, TruHolo display technology and InstaKredit compatibility, the FACT threatens to contact the FUB because April keeps talking to the machine. She asks the FACT why she should upgrade, when, apparently, the FACT already has a voice interface installed, since it understands April when she says she will just use the touch screen to operate the FACT. The installed voice interface is for sales purposes only, though.
FACT Stories Edit
Originally the player was to be able to use the FACT, and read various news stories. This was available in an early demo of the game, later removed from the final version of the game. The files are still available to read using TLJ Viewer or an .ini Hack. Several articles appeared in a modified format on the official TLJ website as an introduction to Newport life.
B/M Corp Ship Discovers Yellow Sun, Eight Planets Edit
B/M NeWire, 04:02 Friday July 28th 2209
During a standard surveying trip of the BKMB star cluster, on course for a heavily colonized sector of the cluster where the Bokamba/Mercer Corporation has fifteen established colonies, the B/M-funded explorer Kon-Tiki, captained by Ralph Thurman, a 13-year veteran of the prospecting business and native of Fenris-2, signalled Thursday morning the discovery of a hitherto undiscovered solar system. Upon further investigation, Captain Thurman and his crew of 72 could confirm via subspace channels the discovery of a new solar system consisting of eight planets and one yellow star.
Although information is scarce, B/M Corp. spokesperson Geonine Murray confirmed early this morning that the system has not previously appeared on scans of the sector. However, she refused to theorize why and how the system has remained undiscovered for so long. The system has temporarily been named Bokamba-19 in accordance with interstellar prospecting laws. The Magellan will receive a point-five percent cut of future profits if and when their discovery leads to the foundation of one or more new colonies.
First Pictures Of New Solar System Transmitted To Earth Edit
B/M NeWire, Updated 08:14 Friday July 28th 2209
The Kon-Tiki, a prospecting and exploration ship operating under the B/M Corp. flag, began transmitting live video and high-resolution photographs Friday morning of one planet in the newly discovered Bokamba-19 yellow star system.
The planet, Bokamba 19-3, is of particular interest because of its size, mass, and atmosphere, all of which are similar to that of Earth. This will make the planet perfectly suited for colonization, and may provide the Bokamba/Mercer Corporation with a fresh source of minerals and metals.
B/M spokesperson Geonine Murray said in a prepared statement: "We are very excited about the suitability of Bokamba 19-3 for colonization. This can only be of benefit to our company, to Earth, and to the potential colonists who will transform this planet into a new home. Wow! Go Bokamba/Mercer!"
Captain Ralph Thurman of the Kon-Tiki had this to say about the course of action in the days to come:
"After a general sweep of 19-3 with robotic cameras and surveying equipment, we'll take our ship down in a suitable area and start initial exploration. At that point, we'll be able to report directly back to Earth with our video and audio equipment from the surface of the planet. I think this will be very, very exciting for everyone. I mean, when was the last time man set foot on a barren, unexplored alien planet? It's been weeks, at the very least! And this one looks to have got some very, very interesting small pebbles."
Live reports will begin appearing on your favorite feeds this afternoon. However, Newport's top-rated Metro Channel will not be covering the event, stating that, in response to feedback from previous extra-planetary events, they will instead be providing their viewers with live footage of nude, dancing girls with holographically enlarged breasts. Commented Alexy Garr, Metro Channel's Vice President of Public Relations; "We asked three million of our most dedicated fans what they wanted to see -- rocks or babes. And they went with the babes."
Growing Vigilantism a Serious Problem, Says Commissioner Edit
FACTS, Newport, 18:32 Thursday July 27th 2209
A number of incidents in the past three weeks have alarmed the Newport Police Department to the possibility of organized vigilantism in the city. Thursday night, the bodies of three young men believed by police to be involved in local drug trafficking were found tied to a fence near Howard's Bar and Grill on West 329th Street. The victims had been mutilated and left to bleed to death. One anonymous witness claimed to have seen a large shape descend from the sky and wrap itself around the victims, while another witness told police, in a rather incoherent statement, that "the kids were eaten up by the night".
The three victims all had prior convictions, and the police are currently looking for anything that might link this latest crime to the previous five incidents.
Meanwhile, the citywide neighborhood-watch organization Alert! held a press-conference Thursday afternoon where they reiterated their support for "anybody with the guts to clean up their own neighborhood. We want to see this kind of pro-active attitude spread across the city and the nation."
Terrorists Target Master Burger Chain Edit
NNN (Newport News Network), Newport, 23:12 Thursday July 27th 2209
"Until the relentless and sadistic exploitation of genetically bred animals comes to an end, we, the BLO (Bovine Liberation Organization), will continue our targeting of Master Burger restaurants and other corporations dedicated to the destruction of our brothers and sisters, the bovines."
The above statement was transmitted anonymously to all major news-bureaus late Thursday night, following a deadly explosion at a Master Burger restaurant in the Newport Metro in which 18 people were killed and 23 seriously wounded by debris from bombs and frozen hamburger meat.
Claiming sole responsibility for the vicious attack, the BLO continued, "We acknowledge and mourn the senseless loss of human life, but the finger should be pointed at the real criminal in this case, the Master Burger Corporation, whose sadistic and cruel treatment of cows, pigs, chickens and tuna-fish has forced us to take extreme measures. Those who died in the explosion chose to support this inhumane practice by eating where they did. Who is the real killer in this case?"
This latest explosion is the fifteenth attack on a Master Burger restaurant in the past twelve months, raising the death-count to a disturbing 205. However, the threat doesn't seem to faze Master Burger's clientele. Spoke Joe Burgess, a cabdriver from Newport, and a regular at yesterday's target:
"The BLO ain't gonna be forcing me to quit eating my favorite food; a Triple Whammy Cow Patty with a side-order of Greaseonions, Fried Fritters, Slopsauce and a supersized Bingo! Cola. They're going to have to blow me up first. I don't give a shit about what the BLO have up their sleeves, us meat-eaters can't ever be subdued by a bunch of long-haired veggie queers out to prove their dicks worth to their slag girlfriends."
Another patron, Alice Sanders, a housewife from Albuquerque, disagrees:
"Even though the BLO's methods are too extreme, I agree with them in principle. The breeding of cattle in genetic factories is despicable; I should know, I used to work at one of these factories. There must be better ways to provide restaurants with the meat they need."
According to some, there are better solutions. One may be synthetic meat, which has been in use for more than 50 years now, but has yet to be adopted by the more ardent meat-eaters despite the similarity in taste and texture. Master Burger aggressively advertises its use of "real meat", and as long as consumers flock to its 40,000+ branches, this is unlikely to change. And as long as Master Burger stays in the "real meat" business, it will be a potential target for BLO, Sons of Soya, and the plethora of other militant animal-rights organizations.
"Dream Sickness" Possible Cause of Rising Violence, Behavioralists Theorize Edit
FACTS, Newport, 17:59 Thursday July 27th 2209
The annual Global Human Behavioral Seminar (GHuBaS) began Thursday at the Glacier Palace Conference Center on Grendel Avenue in Newport with a presentation by Dr. Lance Goldman, Ph.D., of MIT. Dr. Goldman presented data gathered in an extensive, three year survey into what has become known as Modern Dream Phenomena, or MDP.
Dr. Goldman began with a disturbing report on the recent increase in violent crime, mental illness and social apathy on a global scale, and continued by theorizing on how these sociological diseases may potentially be linked to the findings in studies performed on more than 8,000 sleeping subjects whose REM sleep brainwave-activity has more than tripled from that of similar studies ten years ago.
MDP is believed to affect more than twenty percent of Earth's population. Symptoms range from difficulty to sleep, a decreased ability to tell waking life from dreams, sleepwalking and -talking, to anxiety attacks and schizophrenia. While most cases of MDP are relatively harmless, the effect of the disease is believed to be cumulative.
Compared to the national average, Newport has one of the highest number of MDP affected citizens, a topic that was addressed by GHuBaS. The seminar will continue through next week, and it is believed that an explanation, and possibly a cure, for the phenomenon, may be forthcoming.
"Chaos Theory" Passes $10B Mark Edit
ENN, 16:23 Thursday July 27 2209
The baton for the most expensive traditional linear entertainment experience ever made has now been passed to Sabretooth Entertainment's action/sci-fi epic "Chaos Theory". The controversial independent content provider and studio confirmed yesterday that the price tag for the Yuri Tamarov starrer has now risen to more than $10,000,000,000 - that's 10 billion adjusted dollars.
"We're putting ourselves on the line with this one," announced Sabretooth Entertainment chairman Alfred Pietrov at yesterday's press conference. "We really believe it's going to be the biggest hit in the history of the entertainment industry."
It will have to be. Taking into account the cost of production, marketing and venue distribution, "Chaos Theory" will have to gross over $12 billion just to break even, a figure previously matched only by the INSense remake of "Titanic", which famously featured a reconstruction of the doomed ocean-liner that was intentionally run into an iceberg in order to recreate the experience as realistically as possible.
Director Tito Fiorentino's last movie, the critically panned low-budget linear feature "First Strike 3: Blood Vengeance" was a commercial bomb, and grossed little over $30 million - recouping less than a third of its relatively meagre $90M price tag. Unlike that movie, however, which played only in digital multiplex venues in suburban malls and via prepaid feeds, "Chaos Theory" will not only be available on the wideband, cross-galactic Sabretooth feed, but will receive a simultaneous intergalactic release in all INSense-equipped theaters.
"Chaos Theory", described as "one average plumber's battle against hideous inter-dimensional flesh-eating nude zombie critters", will be released this Thanksgiving, and the feature will be accompanied by more than 1.5 billion adjusted dollars in advertising across all media.
Stars Recycled Edit
ENN, 09:01, Friday July 28, 2209
It has been called the entertainment trial of the Century, and at stake is the privacy of the stars of the Screen, Holograms, INSense movies and ViFa. The question asked is old, yet no less valid than it ever was: Should celebrities be allowed continued control of their virtual avatars in material sold and used by the public? The public says no, the stars say yes. And between the two stand the studios, production companies and agencies for whom the outcome of this trial may mean billions of dollars gained or lost.
The question of celebrity privacy has come up again and again since the earliest days of linear features and electronic entertainment. Before the avatars, if a studio or production company wanted to use a specific star, that star would be required to appear in person, on an actual, physical set, in front of cameras. This meant that the stars would have to travel extensively to partake in scenes "on location", to promote their latest movie on televisual shows shot live, or to attend award ceremonies. With the creation of entertainment avatars in the early 21st century, this changed.
Now, of course, a star can continue his or her career from the comfort and privacy of a Toronto or Bombay home, and the choice to play a specific role may result in no more work than a genetic signature on a contract card, leaving the director with the task of instructing their virtual avatars. With the recent increase in private productions, intended for a limited audience or free distribution, however, stars have found themselves featured in roles they'd never have chosen for themselves, nor are getting paid for. Tools to make avatar extraction possible have started appearing everywhere, making it very easy to make, say, a pornographic INSense experience featuring Tom Moss and Kate Humley. Understandably enough, this is something stars wish to prevent.
Bob Amos' Weekend Forecast for the Metropolitan Area Edit
Hi there, Bob here with some weather Factoids! Whoa, looks like this weekend will be the hottest yet this summer. Here's the rundown:
Friday we got clear skies, and plenty of old Mr.Sun. Humidity will rise in the afternoon to approximately 90%, and precipitation caused by condensation is expected on lower levels, especially the Hope Street area where there'll be a virtual downpour, so keep your umbrellas up, folks, or prepare to get soaked! High 38° Celsius, low 32°. In other words, no relief for us wicked Newportians today!
Saturday doesn't look any better (or worse, if you happen to like sun and heat). Bright and shiny, a few clouds, but with a high of 40° and a low of 30°, that won't do much good. There is a possibility of heavy condensation and precipitation in Metro Circle and other lower level areas. Again - umbrellas - good idea.
On to Sunday, and what a surprise, it'll be sunny, some clouds, high 41°, low 29°. Condensation and precipitation expected. In other words, expect a summer weekend like no other!
Now, people, heed this advice from ol' Bob Amos:
Heading out to the beaches this weekend? If you really have to (and I'd be happier if you didn't), apply that radiation cream NOW! Leave it on overnight, give it time to work itself into your skin's cellular structure, to really cement its barricades against those lethal ultraviolet rays. And remember, people croak every day at the beach. It's no holiday out there on the beach (so to speak), so watch out.
Second of all, there's a chance we'll see a real storm here in Newport by the end of the weekend, but at this points there's no way to tell, so watch out, keep your eye to the sky and your pads tuned to Bob Amos on FACT, and you might survive anything!