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Discovering Kent Whitman
Patience and a bit of brainwork was all it needed. The creators of this game are leading me and many others on a merry dance indeed. How will it end? Do they even know themselves? Anyway, I certainly liked the trick with the pictures of Kent Whitman's PDA which appeared on his autopsy report, then after much transformation revealed a secret message in garbled language. I prefer my language ungarbled, when it says something along the lines of: ""Take free bird to DC node for new face, UV dip, erase, hand off to engineer for questioning. Rational Hatter for documents, remember your manners!". Still, a bit of interpretation is needed: The "free bird" would be an AI, being taken to have her appearance changed - just the kind of work that Electric Toyland, the shop outside which Kent Whitman was shot, does. Then the AI would be questioned, to reveal whatever secret they may be hiding. So it would seem that Kent Whitman may have been gunned down on purpose by Fidelio Belem, who just happened to be in the area, but that the AI he was accompanying got away. Who was it?

Having been told to go to the Rational Hatter for documents, I obligingly do so. It's certainly a nice place for hats. Clues were a bit harder to come by. But once you've solved the puzzle on the Custom Hats page, you get to see a few slides of a woman who looks like Venus (from Evan's photos) being followed then wrestled to the ground by another woman dressed in black. Who are they? I have no firm answers for you yet, but I could hazard a guess that Venus, instead of being accompanied by Kent Whitman to Electric Toyland for a change of identity, got caught on her own, possibly by Diane Fletcher of Rogue Retrieval. Is this what really happened? I need your help on this one.

A brief interlude here, I need to take a step back. Because I set off believing - or wanting to believe - that the AIs were the good guys, heck that they were people just like me wanting only to be helpful. But it could be that there are two sides to the story, or even more than that. Can robots that were good turn bad spontaneously? Or does someone have to intervene to make this happen? If so, who and why would want to do this? My head is starting to spin a little. I'm going to go and see another corner of cyberspace for a few minutes, because I'm starting to wonder if I am not just a puppet in this game that someone has created for some unknown purpose.

I'd still like to believe that artificial intelligence is a positive force, that AIs are on the side of truth and justice. But now I have some doubts, or at least some doubts have been put in my mind. I doubt everything right now.

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