Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Random stories: The number world

Year 2194 F6, mankind lived in a very different world. It is the 6th Five-year Era. Man and machine has blurred. Everyone has a wearable glasses that is embedded with a micro-processor and is a face- features reader.

With a look, everyone is identified. Unless done by sophisticated surgeons, one need not bother to disguise oneself, the technology can pick up the nuances. Anyway, it is already the sixth cycle, anyone who disguised themselves successfully and let themselves appear as "errors", or "No available data" fared far worse than the "Decimals"

"Decimals" are the lowest social class. They have low productivity rate, or due to the fact that they were in jails or jobless for a considerable period of time, their "F" value as measured in the 5 year time cycle, will be very low. In fact, these Decimals, would often mocked as Zeros Heros, but as with every hypocritical society, no one is worthless, hence, the word decimal. The F value is a complicated calculation, it is not just based on productivity level, but also salary earned, sales made, margins levels of sales, KPIs achieved by bosses. Hours of community service and money raised for worthy cases are also calculated, but has very little weight age and is only included in the 4th Five-Year Era. In the first Five year ERA, there are 29 versions of such calculations, and second Five year Era, only 2 versions. They have perfected it since the third Five year Era, and allow only slight modifications or additions to the formula.

Decimals can only hoped to move up to the "factors" class, when the 7th Five Year Era came. Most do not stand a chance, before data are officially archived at the end of the Five Year Era, and loaded into the central system, most people from the "Prime" class will saved it to save themselves from choosing a wrong employee, and struck with it for the next 5 years. Although they are prohibited by law to use past data, no one can really do anything to them. Primes are people who will never need to reset their numbers since their numbers are expected to only keep growing and they as the word, prime, imply, are unique in their own field with no real replacement or alternatives. Primes are the equivalents of today government leaders, big and wealthy businessmen and top bosses of the respective fields.  

"Factors" are employees. The majority of the masses are factors. Like the word imply, there are a factor in the success of their organization. If they do really well, they have a chance to move up to the "multiples", successful middle managers.

The union formed mainly by Factors has fought hard to ensure no one keep past data of previous 5 year Era, but because factors come and go, and can be easily tempted to switch sides by promises by Primes to become Multiples, it is a losing battle.

Some of the Primes wanted more social justice, but ironically, because they emphasizes on doing good, which can be difficult to measure beyond money raised and hours of service rendered to the community, they are also considered the Odds Primes. Odd Primes knew they are fighting a losing battle. The victory they had, was to include social hours into the calculation of F. But many virtues has no number values.


To be continued...


  1. Some points to ponder and food for thoughts.

    Almost everything has some form of numbers in it.

    It is about understanding what that number represents and means that makes it meaningful and useful. It can also lead or change the next outcome depending on the action taken at that point in time.

    1. Hi numbers,

      No doubt u are important. I also believed in KPIs, measurable targets. But I never believe everything can and should be measured. KPIs should not override common sense, when the 2 are in conflict, common sense and the greater purpose should prevail. But that is not always the case.

      Take investing for example, I believe in looking at both numbers and story. Some believed they can just look at numbers or that the story is of minimal importance. Both are interlinked ...

  2. Hi Lizardo,

    Wa, what is enumeration? I check wiki and is no wiser...

    So not sure it's a compliment, a Suan or just a neutral remark.

    Nonetheless, got response already very good!

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