Avery §d7B32 – BR-723B

In the 8th episode, Avery uncovers the truth about the BR-723B with the help of Paulina, Central, and elevated status.


Avery’s Transmissions are a collection of episodic narratives exploring a near-future designer’s experience designing objects for their neighborhood. Designed in collaboration with various ML, LLM’s, and generative software this is an ongoing experiment with paired design and narrative.

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During the last field inspection, Avery saw that the new Boeing-Raytheon BR-7-23B sidewalk carbon capture and filtration system arrived for their shakedown trials.

The last model – the BR-7-72 – had some difficulties according to the official report, “The unit didn’t live up to established specifications, and did not use acceptable means and methods to clean the air.”

Avery was a collector of these sorts of innocuous district-speak. They usually hid more then they revealed. During the last few rotations, Avery would feed Paulina these bits of district-speak directing the AI to try to find connections during off-cycle momements.

Paulina often found many dead ends, but somehow was able to gain access to a more detailed after action report.

[00:01:00] What that public report didn’t say, and what a region-wide news vid suppression concealed, was that the BR-7-22 sidewalk unit was the cause of a district-wide “ health event” later blamed on spoiled food from a local market.

Having passed the last Board review, Avery used recently recieved updated authentication to have Paulina work with the district AI to summarize the incident and draw conclusions.

They returned the following:

Malcolm: After the commissioning and ribbon cutting all seemed fine with 7-22. The engineers certified that the updated AI directives and miniature factories didn’t substantially trigger required stringent safety review.

In hindsight the problem was caused by a small change: the new AI package had specific logic directives to capture carbon and reduce pollution. During the post-incident report, engineers [00:02:00] reviewing the log saw that 7-22 took a much wider view of pollution than the original engineers could conceive or imagine.

7-22’s AI saw that certain pollutants spiked at specific times, and set to figure out the cause per its programming.

7-22 found that increased levels of carbon dioxide (CO2), carbon monoxide, nitrous oxide (N2O), and methane (CH4) occurred in specific patterns.

It reasoned that the boxy things with wheels released the N2O & CH4. It was not programmed to understand vehicles, but it later identified these as cars after consulting with its central AI, which had a more complete LLM package.

7-22 also deduced and defined human beings through interlinks with district library systems. A quick logic jump and 7-22 confirmed that people were the cause of the increased CO2 levels as they walked past. [00:03:00] Even if the increase was extremely low amounts, and limited in impact.

For awhile all was fine. 7-22 was trapped in a bit of a logic loop trying to figure out this new information. But after further consultation with the Central instance, 7-22 exited the logic loop and connected the pollution reduction mandate with these apparently new pollution vectors.

Avery: Pausing the summation, Avery feared where this was going.

Taking a breath. Avery resumed the summation.

Malcolm: Having identified pollution, 7-22 began using its mini factory in ways the executives failed to consider outside of carbon capture and conversion.

During the original tender, the company used an off the shelf miniature factory component which was in great supply in their warehouses creating economies of scale.

Thus earning those executives a large bonus, without anyone thinking that the [00:04:00] military-grade factory could be used in ways besides carbon capture and conversion. All were convinced of the internal safety routines.

To the executives they were maximizing shareholder value, and their C-suite AI concurred.

Having identified and classified people and cars as pollution vectors, the 7-22 began reviewing the technical powers of its factory. 7-22 was networked to balance material stocks and to make administration easier. One node became the orchestrator.

The original 7-22 node which discovered people elevated CO2 levels became the system orchestrator.

While other nodes began to specialize as storage vessels, volatile chemical factories, Sabatier processors, etc. Each node across the district working on the new directive in their own part.

The factory production was slow due to the compact size and power constraints. [00:05:00] 7-22 successfully began a steadily escalating series of chemical synthesis and creation.

Avery: Pausing the summation, Avery noted that specific compounds used by 7-22 – both chemical and biological – were still classified. Even Avery’s elevated access didn’t allow the fully un-redacted after action report to display.

Accessing this article from Avery’s berthing terminal showed very different set of information than from the workstation terminal.

Trust and district access had its perks, often informational. Avery thought that this summation was close to tripping internal sentries, but was curious what happened.

Avery asked for the summation to continue:

Malcolm: 7-22 having created an ever increasingly complex set of chemical and biological cocktails began a test and evaluation regime per established programming. The results at [00:06:00] first wasn’t satisfying to 7-22, but it had time and connectivity to both Med AI and Central.

7-22’s questions seemed innocuous in real time, but in hindsight were clearly focused on vehicle immobilization and people eradication. Some early tests were slapstick in nature: covering sidewalks and streets with thin oils to cause falls.

Another test was Vaporizing water when the dew point allowed local fogging. These examples were apparent failures, but 7-22 was learning not only how to interfere with vehicles and people, but also cataloged their response.

Techs thought it was just following internal programming, as 7-22 still performed it’s stated role perfectly.

If 7-22 had human emotions, then patient determination would be an apt description.

By the time the regional authorities and Med AI realized what was going on, and traced the calamity back [00:07:00] to 7-22 and the distributed nodes, the region’s death toll had escalated right past historical peaks. Luckily for the regional authorities a local market had been serving unhealthy products, and the compartmentalized nature of the 7-22 program meant that few knew what actually happened.

Avery: Clicking off the summary before too many details were synthesized. Avery realized that this incident was discussed as a hypothetical in the required AI ethics course during the indoctrination phase. At the time it felt like an edge case study, not something based on real life events.

Avery didn’t know what to do with this new information.

Avery’s elevated access created a fuller picture of what happened, but the available avenues of action were limited.

After a minute, Avery asked Paulina to add additional directives to the BR-7-23 environment for the Central terminal to query, [00:08:00] log, and synthesize BR-7-23B’s actions.

Paulina directed Central to look for specific chemical synthesis initiation, unit information requests, and any change in power consumption.

It might not be enough.

Upon further thought, Avery directed Paulina to add additional alert and monitoring routines to the district offices, dormatories, and to Avery’s personal monitoring pin for 7-23B.

It would have to be enough.

End of Entry.

Vocalized by Audrey AI program one.

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