2108: Virgle City
One hundred years after the launch of Project Virgle, we see the emergence of an enduring human community, with its own economy, ecology and social customs and mores.
- Microorganisms - Following 6 years of drilling in the permafrost of Chryse Planitia northeast of the Sagan station, egzobiologists announce the discovery of native Martian methanogene microorganisms and start research on their genetic material to establish their relation (if any) to Earthly life.
- Economy - Martian exports of software systems and services, synthetic protein matrices, micro m-learning processor designs and medical vision implants reach an all-time high. The Earth/Mars trade balance is maintained largely by entertainment imports from Earth, although a nascent Martian music and video scene anchored by the Shoreline Amphitheater is starting to sell well Earthside. Shares of Virgle, Inc. (Nas: VRGL) sell at an all-time high (adjusted for splits) of 69.32 Mollars.
- Population - The human population of Mars reaches 1,000 by 2050 and, growing a robust 8% per year after that through both spaceflight immigration and more traditional means, surpasses 100,000 by the time Virgle City celebrates its first centennial -- including the first (human) generation to be born on the Red Planet, and thus truly having the right to call themselves Martians.
- Phobos - Google now stores a full copy of the Internet on Mars as a physical backup, while Virgin is now the planet's major producer of cargo and crew ships and operates a large shipyard on the mineral-rich Martian moon Phobos.
- Virgle Ships - By mid-century, Virgle’s hot thermal nuclear propulsion launcher is sending spaceships, both crewed commuter flights and autonomous supply runs, regularly between Earth and Virgle City.
- Terraforming - After nearly a century, the terraforming of Mars is 89% complete. Residents of Virgle City and its outlying settlements can now walk around wearing nothing more than breathers, and adapted crops are growing in the open. The food supply has diversified, manufacturing has expanded into commodities and a transit project promises to open new land not far from Tharsis to development. Protesters, like this young woman borne in Virgle City in 2083, warn of the risks that untrammeled development pose to the Red Planet's natural beauty.