There was a man. His name was Joe. Joe Blow, from accounting. He did accounting things. He was happy.
One day, Joe woke up, and saw a notification blinking on his smartphone. He hit the home button and swiped it open, and he saw what the notification was: an app had updated. But it was an app he had never heard of. “Stats has been updated.”
Joe’s mind queried to remember if he had ever downloaded an app named Stats. Coming up with nothing, he went into his app list, and sure enough, there it was, “Stats”, with a little heart monitor line logo. He found himself nervous to open it, so he went onto the app store and searched for it… nothing. In “My Apps”… nothing.
“This is very peculiar,” Joe thought. Still a little puzzled, he pushed it out of his mind and left for work.
Lunchtime in the breakroom. Joe loves his noms. Buzz; a text. Joe read it and laughed out loud, sent a response, then placed his phone on the breakroom table. Buzz; another notification.
“Texts sent +1; now at 86387 [Ok] [Go to Stats app]”
Joe looked at his phone for a moment, then figured it was dumb bloatware his provider installed before shipping. He chose to go to the app.
A larger version of the heart monitor logo on a black background washed over the phone screen, with the monitor line a bright red. It raised and lowered in brightness for about 15 seconds before the app finally loaded into… a simple screen on the same black background with a white button that said “View Your Stats”.
Joe hit the button.
“Welcome to your stats, tracked daily in realtime!
Steps walked: 541,866
Times jumped: 6964
Times vomited: 46″
The list continued with similar actions done by a typical human being living in every day life… with numbers next to them. The list had a scroll bar on the right, and it showed that the list was quite lengthy. Joe started to scroll.
More every day life things, with more numbers. “Times smashing glass, times having sex, times stealing…”
“Times stealing?” Joe thought. The number next to it was 345.
Joe put his phone down. He remembered receiving the notification about the texts sent. He had a theory… he looked at the app and saw a magnifying glass icon in the upper right. He hit it and a simple search input appeared. He typed “texts”, hit Search, and the app scrolled and highlighted some stats: “Texts drafted: 935, Texts sent: 86387”
Joe brought up his contacts and sent a simple text to his father, then put his phone down. 10 seconds later, buzz, a notification:
“Texts sent +1; now at 86388 [Ok] [Go to Stats app]”
Joe instinctly put his phone down on the table and pushed it away. And then he looked around. He heard voices from the other offices, but he was alone in the breakroom; no one was watching him. There was a big hooplah in the office recently about the opposition to a camera being in the breakroom, therefore it was removed; no one was watching him from there either. A prank from a friend? But how did they know he had sent a text? None were programmers to have hacked his phone…
Joe remembered the stat about stealing. He searched for it; 345.
“Gotta be some malware designed to freak me out,” Joe thought. BUZZ BUZZ BUZZ. Joe jumped. His phone was vibrating from an alarm; his break was over. Joe killed all apps on his phone, dropped it in his pocket and walked out of the breakroom to return to work. Buzz. He pulled his phone out:
“Meals completed +1; now at 10739 [Ok] [Go to Stats app]”