Hello, friends, and welcome back to Tomorrow News Network: A to Z.  For this year’s A to Z Challenge, I’m telling you all about the story universe I created for my upcoming Sci-Fi adventure series, Tomorrow News Network.  In today’s post, D is for:

DIGI-STREAM

There’s a longstanding trope in science fiction.  In the future, something very similar to the Internet will still exist, but it will be rebranded with an even more futuristic sounding name.  The Datanet.  The Cybersphere.  The Omni-Web.  Something like that.

I’ve heard a lot of people complain about this trope.  Why wouldn’t people in the future just call the Internet the Internet?  I was tempted to do just that in Tomorrow News Network, but then I realized that scaling up the Internet from a world wide web to a galaxy wide web might not work so well.

Why not?  Because of speed-of-light delays.  Connecting to a server on the galactic web could take hundreds or perhaps thousands of years (if not millions or billions of years), depending on which planet that server is located on.  Talk about slow Internet speeds!

Faster than light travel and faster than light communications are possible in the Tomorrow News Network universe, but not without consequences.  In the logic of Tomorrow News Network physics, anything traveling faster than light must also be traveling backwards through time.  We’ll talk about this more when we get to the letter I, but for now I’ll just say this: in most cases, F.T.L. technology creates more time travel-related headaches than its worth.

So instead of having continuous access to a galactic Internet, humans living in far-flung corners of the galaxy rely on a subscription service called digi-stream.  For young Milo Marrero and his girlfriend, Lianna (sorry, I mean Milo’s friend who happens to be a girl), the weekly digi-stream downlink is an opportunity to read all the insane rumors and crazy conspiracy theories that are circulating about the Tomorrow News Network and their star reporter, Talie Tappler.

But just as with the Internet of today, you shouldn’t believe everything you read in the weekly digi-stream downlink.

Next time on Tomorrow News Network: A to Z, we’ll meet the brave men and women who defend Earth from its enemies.

13 responses »

  1. Kate Rauner says:

    ” Why wouldn’t people in the future just call the Internet the Internet?” How dull – but I’m intrigued to learn you plan to deal with the vastness of space. Most scifi space stories simply throw in the towel and have magical travel and communications.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. You’ve told me about your FTL rules before, but I’ll be interested to see how it applies to communication.

    It does seem like space in general will create “island” internets, where intracommunication is fast and interactive, but intercommunication between them slow and perhaps expensive. Even just a solar system wide network would have those issues, although we might imagine large scale caching infrastructures to minimize it. But interstellar distances create a whole different ballgame, depending on your rules of magic.

    Liked by 1 person

    • J.S. Pailly says:

      That’s basically the way I picture it was well: lots of little “island” internets for each planet. Digi-stream is just a service for transmitting large chunks of data from one planet to another.

      I have to admit F.T.L. communications are not the most well thought out thing in the T.N.N. universe. But I figure the same rules that keep spaceships from entering their own pasts must apply to information, somehow.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Alien Resort says:

    Maybe we can use quantum entanglement to bypass the delays.

    Liked by 1 person

    • J.S. Pailly says:

      I really need to do more research about quantum entanglement. I’ve heard a lot of physicists say it definitely could not work for communications, and I’ve heard a lot of physicists say it definitely could. So I’m not really sure what to think.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Frédérique says:

    I love the idea of a galaxy wide web! Well, a lot of work to do before achiving this, as a lot of place right here in our Planet do not have Internet access yet ;))

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Oh my i love the idea of galaxy wide web! It seems so cool.Yes talk about slow internet speeds.. i can’t imagine waiting for 1000 of years to get internet!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Sounds like even with the advances in technology it’s still going to fall prey to the misinformation rampant on the internet. Weekends In Maine

    Liked by 1 person

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